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What should I do with these messy Californian Poppies?

Pink678Pink678 Posts: 283
edited June 2022 in Problem solving
I have these californian poppy plants (jelly beans), that have had a good flowering some weeks ago.

They are now looking rather flat against the earth showing their roots. They were spilling over the lawn and I did push them back so they wouldn't get mowed.

I can see seed heads starting to form.

I'm still very new to gardening and I'm wondering what I should do now with these plants?

These plants are a few years old. Last year they started growing new leaves at the base around early autumn time I think, and I then just cut off all all the old dead growth then. I don't know if that was a good time to do it, but they survived and were covered in flowers a few weeks ago.

I'm happy to just leave them as they are, if that is best for them. Just not sure if there is something else I'm supposed to be doing.  Any advice is gratefully received.



  • Hostafan1Hostafan1 Posts: 34,530
    I'd cut them back to about 4 - 6 inches ( 100 - 150 mm ) and let them sprout back out again.
    Best to remove seed pods as they tend to stop them producing new flowers
  • Pink678Pink678 Posts: 283
    That sounds good.  Will they flower again this year do you think?
  • Hostafan1Hostafan1 Posts: 34,530
    almost certainly, it's still only June
  • Pink678Pink678 Posts: 283
    That is great news. I'll cut them back to 4-6" as you suggest, thank you so much
  • Hostafan1Hostafan1 Posts: 34,530
  • NollieNollie Posts: 7,316
    Mine did exactly the same and coincidentally I chopped them right down this morning as I was fed up of looking at the mess. They’re planted in poor, gritty soil, which I thought would’ve kept them upright and tidy but no. 
    Mountainous Northern Catalunya, Spain. Hot summers, cold winters.
  • Pink678Pink678 Posts: 283
    Nollie, they are tremendously messy aren't they. I'm going to go out and give mine a satisfying chop right now. Let's hope we both get rewarded with another flush of flowers later on.
  • BiljeBilje Posts: 753
    I’d never thought of chopping them, I believed them to be annuals so was surprise when two hidden in a border ones re bloomed this year. I’ll treat them as short lived perennials but will leave a couple of stems to produce seed. 
  • Pink678Pink678 Posts: 283
    edited June 2022
    After I pruned, I found the plants are all growing sideways, parallel to the ground. After chopping I tried to straighten them up a bit without harming them but I don't know how much good it will do. Does anyone else find their plants grow sideways? Mine bend 90 degrees as soon as they come out of the ground.

  • FairygirlFairygirl Posts: 53,910
    There's nothing else around them to give them any proper support - lots of empty spaces, so they'll tend to flop more easily.
    It would be better if you have some other plants there to help keep them more upright. Something woody, or sturdier, or both   :)

    It's a place where beautiful isn't enough of a word....

    I live in west central Scotland - not where that photo is...
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