One of the most important things about Poppy is its history. The romanticism inspired by this fragile, wild flower, transforms it from a simple garden plant into a symbol of death or even love.
Poppy, a plant discovered 3000 years ago in the Egyptian Pyramids, used to be considered by some cultures a symbol of deep sleep and death. The first significance is inspired by the opium that can be extracted from it and the second one by the powerful red color that has great resemblance with that of blood. Greeks and Romans considered poppy a symbol of love or a sign of fertility that brings health. Poppy was also used as a symbol in literature and the best example is „The Wonderful Wizard of Oz”.
Poppy is a small herbaceous plant that usually grows in groups and that has just one flower per stem. The diversified palette of colors and the not very demanding growing process, alows gardeners to play with it in order to create an explosion of beauty underlined by the fragility of its appearance. The colors can vary from white, pink, yellow, orange, red to even blue and in almost all cases the flower disks have dark centered markings.
Besides the natural purpose of the plant that is as a garden plant, Poppy plays, because of the opium that can be extracted from it, an important role in producing several drugs or foods. Opium Poppy or Papaver somniferum is the species of Poppy used as an ingredient in producing several drugs and the seeds in cooking and baking.
Being considered drugs only prescribed by doctors under close supervision, the morphine, the opium alkaloids and the codeine contained by Poppy can mislead people in judging the way in wich the plant was administrated. For example, the seeds produced by Poppy are used as ingredients in several foods such as muffins. It was proven that, if consuming muffins the result can be a false positive drug test.
Some countries have chosen, because of the morphine contained by Poppy or even because of various religious reasons as in the case of Saudi Arabia, to bann the sale of the seeds.
Poppy Pictures Gallery