Photo by Melody

PlantFiles: Iceland Poppy, Arctic Poppy
Papaver nudicaule

Family: Papaveraceae (pa-pav-er-AY-see-ee) (Info)
Genus: Papaver (puh-PAY-ver) (Info)
Species: nudicaule (new-dee-KAW-lee) (Info)

3 vendors have this plant for sale.

18 members have or want this plant for trade.

Alpines and Rock Gardens

18-24 in. (45-60 cm)

12-15 in. (30-38 cm)

USDA Zone 3a: to -39.9 C (-40 F)
USDA Zone 3b: to -37.2 C (-35 F)
USDA Zone 4a: to -34.4 C (-30 F)
USDA Zone 4b: to -31.6 C (-25 F)
USDA Zone 5a: to -28.8 C (-20 F)
USDA Zone 5b: to -26.1 C (-15 F)
USDA Zone 6a: to -23.3 C (-10 F)
USDA Zone 6b: to -20.5 C (-5 F)
USDA Zone 7a: to -17.7 C (0 F)
USDA Zone 7b: to -14.9 C (5 F)
USDA Zone 8a: to -12.2 C (10 F)
USDA Zone 8b: to -9.4 C (15 F)
USDA Zone 9a: to -6.6 C (20 F)
USDA Zone 9b: to -3.8 C (25 F)
USDA Zone 10a: to -1.1 C (30 F)
USDA Zone 10b: to 1.7 C (35 F)

Sun Exposure:
Full Sun

Parts of plant are poisonous if ingested

Bloom Color:
Bright Yellow
White/Near White

Bloom Time:
Late Spring/Early Summer
Mid Summer


Other details:
This plant is attractive to bees, butterflies and/or birds
Average Water Needs; Water regularly; do not overwater

Soil pH requirements:
6.1 to 6.5 (mildly acidic)
6.6 to 7.5 (neutral)
7.6 to 7.8 (mildly alkaline)

Patent Information:

Propagation Methods:
From seed; direct sow outdoors in fall
From seed; winter sow in vented containers, coldframe or unheated greenhouse
From seed; sow indoors before last frost
From seed; direct sow after last frost

Seed Collecting:
Allow pods to dry on plant; break open to collect seeds
Properly cleaned, seed can be successfully stored

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By starshine
Thumbnail #1 of Papaver nudicaule by starshine

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There are a total of 31 photos.
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10 positives
2 neutrals
No negatives

Gardeners' Notes:

Positive Garden_Potter On Jun 1, 2012, Garden_Potter from Olympia, WA wrote:

This poppy appeared in a shady spot in my Olympia WA garden last summer. I was putting in a rain garden and had to move it but was concerned that it wouldn't transplant well. I need not have worried. It's now in a mostly sunny spot in the middle of a bunch of native fringecups on the upper level of the rain garden and is thriving. I first noticed it blooming the beginning of May and it now has more blossoms than ever. I rarely water and it seems to do fine.

Positive kqcrna On Apr 29, 2007, kqcrna from Cincinnati, OH (Zone 6a) wrote:

Icelandic poppies wintersowed very well for me last year. I have had a few blossoms already this year. I also find that unlike annual poppies whose flowers each last only a day, the Icelandic blooms last nearly a week before fading. They have many flower buds now.


Positive croclover On Jul 1, 2006, croclover from Lake Forest, CA (Zone 10a) wrote:

Planted a couple of six-packs of these in late January and a few of them are still blooming in 90 degree weather in the beginning of July. They love well drained soil and frequent deadheading to encourage new blooms. A few scales or aphids can attack, but if planted next to more tender foliage such as Toadflax, most pests will avoid the poppies. An absolute joy to see these gorgeous and delicate flowers nodding in the breeze!

Neutral Photographer On May 24, 2006, Photographer from Moxee, WA (Zone 4a) wrote:

This plant can survive cold winters but it requires a moist climate as well. Our 1st attempt with this plant failed due to excessively dry summer heat with low hunmidity. IT is not well adapted to summer in the desert. This region is desert naturally and only the irrigation districts prevent my area from being cactus and sage and cheat grass. The Asiatic Poppies are far better suited to the arid and hot weather we endure.

Positive nevadagdn On Apr 14, 2005, nevadagdn from Sparks, NV (Zone 7a) wrote:

I've found Iceland poppies to be variably perennial in my area. I had one plant that lasted for years, much to the delight of my addicted cat, who would nibble the seed pods every year. Other plants have failed to make it through the summer, however. I use Iceland poppies as cool-weather spring annuals now, in combination with pansies, ranunculus and Anemone coronaria.

Positive cuzzinchris On Apr 14, 2005, cuzzinchris from Buffalo, NY wrote:

Live in Buffalo NY and have had tremendous success with this plant. I purchased some plants already started at a nursery. Replanted in relatively poor soil and they have come back to life every spring after many harsh winters. Lots of flowers throughout the summer.

Positive moongate9 On Jul 31, 2004, moongate9 from Waverly, IL wrote:

From a packaged "wildflower mix" that was almost 2 years old, I suddenly have a plethora of iceland poppies! Until they bloomed, I had no idea what they were, having never seen them until that time. What a pleasant surprise!

Positive RichSwanner On Jan 18, 2004, RichSwanner from Citrus Heights, CA (Zone 9b) wrote:

It isn't cold here, but the fog hangs like a curtain shutting out the sun. So nice to have the Poppy, to add that sunshine to our otherwise dark dreary day. A wonderful color source for winter. Keeps blooming through spring.

Positive Weezingreens On Nov 2, 2003, Weezingreens from Seward, AK (Zone 3b) wrote:

Iceland Poppies do very well in our Alaskan climate. They are a short-lived perennial, but self-seed readily, popping up in the driveway gravel, as well as the garden.

Positive echoes On Sep 7, 2003, echoes from South of Winnipeg, MB (Zone 3a) wrote:

I added a pile of compost/manure to a part shady bed this spring and tilled it real deep. It was planted with larkspur and a few perennials just for this summer, and dotted every here and there are Icelandic poppies that reseeded themselves 2 or 3 years ago. I don't know where they were hiding, but it sure is nice to have them back.

Positive starshine On Aug 1, 2003, starshine from Bend, OR (Zone 6a) wrote:

This is a hardy plant that blooms almost continuously. It does well in dry sandy soil, ot a combination soil. It provides a bright colour spot anywhere in a garden, but will have a tendency to stunt in direct sunlight. Prefers partial shade.

Neutral poppysue On Nov 2, 2001, poppysue from Westbrook, ME (Zone 5a) wrote:

Icelandic poppies have gray-green, fuzzy foliage and form a basal rosette that stays close to the ground. The slender 18-inch stems rise above the foliage to support delicate 3-inch blooms of white, yellow, orange, apricot, and gold. A perennial poppy hardy from zones 2-8, individual plants are short-lived but they will self sow if you allow some seed pods to mature. They like full sun or part shade in the south and well-drained soil.


This plant has been said to grow in the following regions:

Seward, Alaska
Gilbert, Arizona
Castro Valley, California
Citrus Heights, California
Lake Forest, California
Lawndale, California
Los Angeles, California
Murrieta, California
Perris, California
Reseda, California
San Anselmo, California
San Diego, California
San Francisco, California
Madison, Connecticut
Lewes, Delaware
Wilmington, Delaware
Hana, Hawaii
Mount Prospect, Illinois
Waverly, Illinois
Lake Park, Minnesota
Mathiston, Mississippi
Livingston, Montana
Sparks, Nevada
Lanoka Harbor, New Jersey
Albuquerque, New Mexico
Brooklyn, New York
Buffalo, New York
Belfield, North Dakota
Cincinnati, Ohio
Grove City, Ohio
Hulbert, Oklahoma
Klamath Falls, Oregon
Salem, Oregon
Port Matilda, Pennsylvania
Wilkes Barre, Pennsylvania
Conway, South Carolina
Harlingen, Texas
New Braunfels, Texas
Moxee, Washington
Olympia, Washington
Vancouver, Washington
Kinnear, Wyoming
Pavillion, Wyoming
Riverton, Wyoming

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