Meconopsis Species, Himalayan Blue Poppy, Tibetan Blue Poppy

Meconopsis betonicifolia

Family: Papaveraceae (pa-pav-er-AY-see-ee) (Info)
Genus: Meconopsis (mee-koh-NOP-sis) (Info)
Species: betonicifolia (bet-on-ih-see-FOH-lee-uh) (Info)
Synonym:Cathcartia betonicifolia
Synonym:Papaver betonicifolium



Water Requirements:

Requires consistently moist soil; do not let dry out between waterings

Sun Exposure:

Partial to Full Shade



Foliage Color:

Unknown - Tell us


24-36 in. (60-90 cm)


18-24 in. (45-60 cm)


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)

Where to Grow:

Unknown - Tell us



Bloom Color:

Dark Blue

Bloom Characteristics:

Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Size:

Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Time:

Late Spring/Early Summer

Other details:

Unknown - Tell us

Soil pH requirements:

5.6 to 6.0 (acidic)

6.1 to 6.5 (mildly acidic)

6.6 to 7.5 (neutral)

Patent Information:


Propagation Methods:

By dividing rhizomes, tubers, corms or bulbs (including offsets)

From seed; direct sow after last frost

Seed Collecting:

Collect seedhead/pod when flowers fade; allow to dry


This plant is said to grow outdoors in the following regions:

Anchorage, Alaska

Juneau, Alaska

Seward, Alaska(2 reports)

Eureka, California

Hope, Maine

Cumberland, Maryland

New Galilee, Pennsylvania

Austin, Texas

Edmonds, Washington

Graham, Washington

Keller, Washington

Redmond, Washington

Seattle, Washington(3 reports)

show all

Gardeners' Notes:


On Sep 1, 2018, Sytse from Drachten,
Netherlands wrote:

In the eighties of last century I had a Meconopsis paniculata "Lincoln Hybrids" which bloomed at their third year of existence. The seeds I bought from Chiltern Seeds in England. I regret the fact that I haven't taken any photos of the quite stunning yellow flowers. During the next forty years I tried other species of Meconopsis, but with very limited succes. They hate hot summers like this summer, but are quite hardy in winter. The soil must be moist most of the time, but too much moisture kills them off. Slugs like to eat them, too. I even bought a booklet about these legendary flowers by mr Bill Terry. To buy plants can be expensive, but I hope that I can have another go at it in the near future.


On Jan 31, 2016, Ancolie88 from Innsbruck,
Austria (Zone 6b) wrote:

The Blue Tibetian Poppy is amazing! I often grow it from seed because it only blooms one time here, here with Aquilegia


On Nov 17, 2014, coriaceous from ROSLINDALE, MA wrote:

I've seen these magnificent plants in bloom at Chanticleer, a terrific estate and botanical garden open to the public, in Wayne, PA.

These plants begin suffering heat stress when the temperature gets above 65F. Prolonged temperatures over 65F will kill them. The gardeners explained how they manage its cultivation in southeastern PA's warm-summer climate:

In the fall, they obtain 1-gal plants from a nursery in Alaska. They overwinter them in cold frames. In the spring, they plant them in the planters. And after bloom, the plants are discarded.


On Apr 17, 2014, garyloveslucy from Jefferson City, MO wrote:

I've never tried growing these in Missouri because we have hot, humid summers. I've seen these plants growing in Anchorage and Mt. Alyeska, Alaska. I couldn't believe the beauty of the blue plants. This has to be the most beautiful blue flower there is. For those of you who have the right climate, I am jealous. Wish a heat resistant variety could be developed.

Just wanted to state that these plants are BEAUTIFUL!


On Jan 27, 2014, timwalsh1 from Eureka, CA wrote:

As a plantaholic I've been growing Meconopsis for years, mostly successfully! Living and growing in Eureka, CA, USA helps a lot because of our cool summers. If you really like this plant as well as I do then let me suggest a couple of websites: Meconopsis World by Dr. James Cobb for great photos of the whole genus (see:, and for basic information see the Meconopsis Group web page( I just received my allotment of seeds from the Mec. Group and I have several trays going. While not all Meconopsis are blue ( fact most aren't) the "Big Blues" are certainly ... read more


On May 20, 2013, hipgranny63 from Edmonds, WA (Zone 8a) wrote:

I've attempted to grow the Meconopsis lingholm in the past to no avail. But, this spring, I bought a plant at our local perennial group's plant sale, planted it at the back of my border in mostly shady, moist conditions and lo and behold, it bloomed! I did not cut the buds off before it bloomed for the first time, as I've seen suggested in some publications. So, hopefully, it will return next year and flourish.


On Sep 17, 2011, KittyWittyKat from Saint Paul, MN (Zone 4b) wrote:

Difficult to thrive in partial shade; requires moist soil and no or very little sun. Will try again with more shade/moisture.


On Jul 18, 2010, Oberon46 from (Mary) Anchorage, AK (Zone 4b) wrote:

Mine, both betonicifolia and lingholm, are very robust in both part sun and almost complete shade. Betonicifolia in my garden grows to about 6' tall (I am 5'2" and they are taller than I am by a bunch). The leaves after a year are about 12" long and 5" wide. Hugely robust. The flowers grow up the stem starting at about the 2' height, recurring to the very top. Lingholm seems to have a slightly purplish cast at the base of the bloom, while betonicifolia is pretty much pure blue. This may be a function of my soil. I purchased the plants and have split them into myriad smaller plants. I had a lavender one but lost it when it was split. Will try seeds this fall to produce both the lavender and a white variety.


On May 11, 2009, anelson77 from Seattle, WA wrote:

I've been able to grow it easily in a wet, partly shaded area. It is back for its third year, bigger than ever, and I have planted some others. The flowers are wonderful looking but I wished it bloomed for a longer period, rather than just early summer. The plant has pretty fuzzy leaves and looks good most of the summer.


On Apr 23, 2006, Leehallfae from Seattle, WA wrote:

This is one of the easiest to germinate seeds. What Dear One did: Planted them in January, left the container outisde, no protection, nothing. We now have about 100 seedlings.

The best way to get them started is to collect seeds fresh from the plant, and refrigerate them until planting time, which for this area, zone 8b, is January.

Plant Meconopisi into well-drained soil, with little and no direct sun.. In wintertime they will die down, but they will return in March and usually be in full flower by May.


On Jul 31, 2005, Weezingreens from Seward, AK (Zone 3b) wrote:

Unlike many areas, Meconopsis enjoy the full sun here. Our summers do not get too hot for them to thrive. I purchased my M. betonicifolia from The Blue Poppy farm in Palmer, Alaska where the summers get considerably hotter than our coastal summers do. There they grew along a hillside, southern exposure to the sun, in both full sun and partial shade. All their plants thrived and volunteer meconopsis were popping up between the rocks.


On Sep 9, 2001, gardengrrl from Minneapolis, MN (Zone 4a) wrote:

Hard to grow outside its preferred climate. Needs cool, moist summers, constant moisture, plenty of shade.