Poppy seeds are known for their nutty flavour and are packed with fatty acids and antioxidants. Indigo Herbs has an extensive range of seeds and nuts in their wholefood range and our Organic Poppy Seeds are another premium quality seed that can be added to salads, used in cooking or baking. We also offer White Poppy Seed Oil, a light and versatile oil that is perfect for natural skincare products.
The history of the poppy seed has its beginnings in Ancient Samaria where it was called ‘hul gil’, the plant of joy. The plant was passed from the Sumerians to the Assyrians and then onto the Babylonians. Finally the poppy reached the early Egyptian civilisation where trade flourished for its medicinal properties in aiding sleep. Poppy paste was so highly regarded that Egyptian Pharaohs were buried with it in their tombs. In Europe the Greeks had the same high reverence for the medical values of the poppy bringing it divine status. The god Hypnos (god of sleep), Thanatos (god of sleep) and the goddess Nyx (goddess of the night) all are depicted with poppy wreaths as a symbol of the power which Greeks gave the poppy. From here the poppy then expanded its reach all over the world being used both for its medicinal properties and as a decorative garden plant. The aesthetic properties of the poppy have long been sought by gardeners for their papery thin silky leaves and vibrant but muted colours.
Poppies come in all sorts of variants and have been bred extensively. Generally multiple stems and leaves grow from the base of the root and reach anywhere from 50 cm to a 100cm in height. Common colours are red and yellow with silky fine petals. Leaves can be either smooth or hairy and grow from one long stem. Seed pods mature after the flower has passed on and can hold hundreds of individual seeds. The variation of each poppy can be quite distinct with many species being totally different from their relatives in the family. Poppies are herbaceous annual, biennial or short-lived perennials.