ARGEMONE (Prickly Poppy) Papaveraceae A. species
HABITAT: Native to southern United States, Mexico, Tropics and South America. Zone 8-10.
USES: Backgrounds, borders.
HABIT: 1-2' perennial plants usually grown as annual with bristly, scalloped leaves and bearing white, yellow, rose, lavender, poppy-like flowers in summer.
SEED GERMINATION AND CULTURE: Sow outdoors, in May, in full sun and sandy soil or indoors six weeks before last frost in peat pots or pellets. Shift to larger pots when roots emerge from pot walls. Indoors maintain even moisture at all times during germination and 70° temperatures within the peat pots or pellets.
Set out in full sun, sandy and well-drained soil, spacing 18" apart. Argemones do not transplant easily, thus the importance of sowing where they will grow or sowing directly to peat pots or pellets if started indoors. Keep cultivated, moderately moist, and feed every month with a balanced garden fertilizer.
SPECIES: A. alba (White Prickly Poppy): 3'. Zone 8. Prickly. Yellow juiced. Southern states. Lobed. Grey- green leaves with spiny edges. Leaves are poisonous. White prickly fruit.
A. grandiflora (Show Prickly Poppy): 3'. Annual. Mexico. White veined, prickly leaves. Yellow juice. 2" white flowers. Variety lutea has yellow flowers.
A. mexicana (Mexican Prickly Poppy): 2-3'. Annual. Showy. Irregular lobed, white spotted leaves with marginal spines. Yellow to orange, summer. Tropic America.
A. platyceras (Crested Prickly Poppy): 4'. Annual. White to purple. Variety rosea with brownish purpleflowers. North and South America.
INSECTS: Not generally a problem.
DISEASES: Not generally a problem.