Plants, Stone, California Landscapes


Poppies Will Put Them to Sleep

purple breadseed poppy

purple breadseed poppy

Our first breadseed poppies have opened, second generation descendants of “Lauren’s Grape.” Their size is always a little shocking when the first one goes, it’s not exactly a subtle flower. Personally, I will always think of papaver poppies as the weapon of choice for the most easily vanquished villain in movie history, the Wicked Witch of the West. The ones in the movie look like Flanders poppies, P. rhoeas, but the witch seems to be referring to the latin name of the breadseed poppies, P. somniferum when she talks about going to sleep. I guess it’s not as cinematic to romp through fields of five foot tall P. somniferum, so the art department substituted in the shorter Flanders ones.

Purple Breadseed Poppy

purple breadseed poppy

Youtube has a version of the original and one of the Pink Floyd/Wizard of Oz mash up, The Dark Side of the Rainbow. The poppy scene starts around 4:10 on the Dark Side version. I wish I could conjure up fields of blooming plants as easily as the witch does.

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4 Responses to “Poppies Will Put Them to Sleep”

  1. May 11th, 2009 at 5:54 am

    wiseacre says:

    Those are gorgeous.

    Yea but you’d better be careful around mop buckets my pretty 🙂

  2. May 11th, 2009 at 8:07 pm

    lostlandscape(James) says:

    I’d forgotten the poppy scene in the Wizard of Oz. Even if it’s not botanically accurate it’s fun to see plants featuring in the plot line of a movie. Today, with opium dens that much further back in history, I wonder if most people would get the reference.

    I guess this is a really stunning plant in more ways than one…

  3. May 13th, 2009 at 5:57 pm

    ryan says:

    The poppy scene is one of the most plant-oriented scenes in movie history that I can think of, and one of the more strange, surreal scenes out of a very strange surreal movie. I also like when the apple trees throw apples at Dorothy.

    Melting after being doused by a single bucket of mop water would be a problem for a gardener, a poor trade for the ability to conjure up flowers, I suppose.

  4. May 17th, 2009 at 4:14 pm

    Kathryn/plantwhateverbringsyoujoy.com says:

    Wow, these poppies are extraordinary. I definitely am not familiar with breadseed poppy, but I will make a point to research now. Thank you for the introduction!

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