Debra Prinzing

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Sunday, May 26th, 2013

Pitchers of Poppies

Poppy One

Why do we love poppies so much? Perhaps it’s because of their pure, vibrant petal colors with the charming button-like centers.

(Green pitcher)
10 stems coral-red Icelandic poppies (Papaver nudicaule), grown by Jello Mold Farm
6 stems Cerinthe major ‘Purpurascens’, grown by Jello Mold Farm
7 stems rattlesnake grass (Briza media), grown by Jello Mold Farm
(Glass pitcher)
10 stems bright yellow Icelandic poppies (Papaver nudicaule), grown by Jello Mold Farm
10 stems Astrantia major ‘Sunningdale Variegated’ foliage, harvested from my garden
7 stems golden apple mint (Mentha x gracilis), grown by Charles Little & Co.
8-inch tall x 5½-inch wide glazed ceramic pitcher
9-inch tall x 5½-inch wide Mexican glass pitcher
Poppy Two

This arrangement, in a clear glass vase, showcases yellow Icelandic poppies, paired with variegated Astrantia and apple mint foliage.

From the Farmer
Poppy care: Many garden books recommend that you sear the cut tips of these poppies in a flame or submerge them in a beaker of boiling water in order to extend their vase life. It has been thought that the extreme heat
will soften the tougher outer stem and increase the surface area for absorbing moisture in the vase. But in fact, according to Diane Szukovathy of Jello Mold Farm, the poppy’s hairy stem collects more foreign matter that
contributes to bacterial build-up in the vase than with smoother-stemmed flowers. Because of this, she says, “heating the stems ‘cooks’ them, making the flower more susceptible to colonization by bacteria.” Diane’s best
tip: “Every few days, re-cut the stems and change the water.”