Poppy (Common) Papaver rhoeas

Status Green - Least concern
Best Time to See June, July, August, September
Colour Red
Habitat Arable, Farmland

The symbol of rememberance, the striking red flowers of the common poppy stand out from afar, painting entire fields vivid scarlet.

In Flanders’ fields the poppies blow...

John McCrae, "In Flanders Fields"

Where it grows

Farmland and waste ground, field edges, roadsides.


Common throughout British Isles but rarer in North and West.

Best time to see

June to September.

Cultural info

  • It is the County Flower of both Essex and Norfolk.
  • In the Language of Flowers it stands for consolation.

How's it doing?

Poppies can be found across the country in the summer months, although modern agriculture has decreased its range.

3 things you may not know

  • Poppies seeds only sprout when the earth about them is disturbed, hence why so many grew on the battlefields of WWI.
  • The Ancient Greeks and Persians associated poppies with love. The Romans were more practical: it was a sacred flower Ceres, goddess of agriculture.
  • North Norfolk has long been known as Poppyland after an association made by the Victorian poet Clement Scott in his poem 'The Garden of Sleep'.