Why is the California poppy California’s flower?

How did the California Poppy become the state flower? In 1890 the California State Floral Society held an election to determine the state’s signature flower. The contestants were the Mariposa Lilly, the Matilija Poppy and the frontrunner, a plant already known as the California Poppy.

Why are poppies the California state flower?

On March 2, 1903 the California poppy, Eschscholzia californica, became the official state flower of California (Ca. Government Code Section 421). The plant’s bright orange flowers are an unmatched symbol of the Golden State, perhaps viewed as a floral representation of the “fields of gold” sought during the gold rush.

Do California poppies only grow in California?

California poppy, (Eschscholzia californica), plant of the poppy family (Papaveraceae), native to the southwestern United States and northern Mexico. It has become naturalized in parts of southern Europe, Asia, and Australia.

Why is it illegal to pick a California poppy?

Most of us Californians grew up believing it is illegal to pick California Poppies, because it is the state flower. As it turns out, that is somewhat of a myth! While there is no law protecting the California Poppy specifically, it is illegal to remove or damage plants from property that a person does not own.

Are poppy flowers only in California?

This flowering plant is native along the west coast of the United States, from Baja California all the way up to the western region of Oregon. Similarly, the California Poppy can also be found throughout the United states in a variety of different colors.

What happens if you pick a California poppy?

If you pick one, you could be prosecuted for a misdemeanor crime punishable with a fine up to $1,000, and even 6 months in jail. It’s also illegal to harm plants on other people’s property unless you get permission. That means one of the few places you can pick poppies without worry is in your own backyard.

How does the California poppy survive in the desert?

In hot summer areas, the poppies will bloom in spring and early summer, and then the tops will die back and the plants become dormant during the heat of the summer. The poppy survives in the form of a fleshy taproot. In cooler coastal climates, California poppies may bloom most of the summer.

Is it illegal to pick the California state flower?

But there’s no specific law that protects that California poppy — the official state flower — directly. Residents are free to collect their own California poppies on their private land, too. The California poppy — Eschscholzia californica — became the state’s official flower on March 2, 1903.

Is it legal to plant California poppy seeds?

Seeds. While it is illegal to grow Papaver somniferum, many seed companies offer the seeds for sale, which is legal. The seeds don’t contain opium and are used in salad dressings, bakery products and the manufacture of soaps.

Is the California poppy edible?

California Poppy Uses and Benefits

Wild poppies are edible, the flowers can be used fresh in salads or in baked goods (try them in place of calendula in my calendula and thyme shortbread cookies).

What are 3 facts about the California poppy?

Facts about California poppy

  • It is native to southwestern parts of North America.
  • In the 19th century, the species spread to Chile, Australia, New Zealand, and other parts of the world with cargo ships.
  • Prefers higher elevations, grows up to 2500 m.
  • It is an annual plant.

Why do bees like California poppies?

They’re there for the pollen. “California poppies provide only pollen–no nectar,” native pollinator specialist Robbin Thorp, emeritus professor of entomology at UC Davis, told the Pollinator Gardening Workshop last Saturday on the UC Davis campus.

Is the California poppy rare?

The diamond-petaled California poppy is one of the rarest plants in California and probably never was widespread. Only seven historic populations are known in the inner Coast Ranges in Contra Costa, Stanislaus, San Luis Obispo and Colusa counties.