Papaver somniferum
opium poppy

Distribution: Introduced and often escaping from cultivation, persisting for a short time.

Habitat: Waste areas, roadsides.

Flowers: June - July

Origin: Introduced from Eurasia

Growth Duration: Annual

Conservation Status: Not of concern


Glaucous annual, the usually simple stems 3-10 dm. tall, glabrous below.


Leaves alternate, sessile and cordate-clasping, shallowly lobed, the lobes toothed, the margins somewhat crinkly.


Flowers single on long, bristly, terminal peduncles; sepals 2, separately early-deciduous; petals 4, white to purple, large, wavy-margined; stamens numerous; style absent, stigma sessile, disk-like, with 5-15 round, stigmatic ridges.


Capsule glabrous, sub-globose, 2.5-5 cm. long.

Accepted Name:
Papaver somniferum L.
Publication: Sp. Pl. 1: 508. 1753. 1753.

Synonyms & Misapplications:
(none provided)
Additional Resources:

PNW Herbaria: Specimen records of Papaver somniferum in the Consortium of Pacific Northwest Herbaria database.

WA Flora Checklist: Papaver somniferum checklist entry.

E-Flora BC: Papaver somniferum atlas page.

CalPhotos: Papaver somniferum photos.

USDA Plants: Papaver somniferum information.

19 photographs:
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