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A red Papaver somniferum flower with purple filaments and yellow-brown anthers and purple inner flower petals around a yellow center with violet lines
papaver somniferum
Papaver somniferum (Opium Poppy)

Native to the Mediterranean region and Turkey. Its global cultivation has expanded due to its medicinal and economic significance. The Poppy seeds are nutritious edible seeds. The plant thrives in temperate climates, displaying a range of vibrant flower colors​. The opium poppy is a potent source of analgesic compounds like morphine, making it highly effective for pain management. Other medicinal benefits include cough suppression due to codeine, a derivative of opium poppy, and the alleviation of diarrhea by slowing down intestinal movements. Furthermore, it possesses sedative properties aiding in relaxation and sleep, and its calming effects can help reduce anxiety and stress. It has muscle relaxant properties, thanks to papaverine found in it, and can ease breathing difficulties in conditions like asthma. Additionally, it has been used to treat insomnia, relieve menstrual pain, and manage muscle spasms. It's also beneficial in addressing gastrointestinal disorders and managing opioid withdrawal symptoms in medical settings. Furthermore, it has cardiovascular benefits, antioxidant properties, potential antibacterial activity, vital role in cancer pain management, and potential anti-inflammatory effects. While it's illegal to grow this plant in the United States under the federal Controlled Substance Act, this law is typically not enforced for poppies grown as ornamentals​6​. However, in some states, it's listed on the invasive species list. Photographed in Bogotá, Colombia.

Papaver somniferum orange flower with yellow stamens and white inner flower petals
A bright red Papaver somniferum flower with frilly petals and a yellow pistil surrounded by stamens in sunlight
Showy red Papaver Somniferum flower with purple stamens and purple flower petals around a yellow center and a green capsule in the background
A plum-pink Papaver somniferum flower with dark purple anther and center petals and yellow anthers and pistils
Red Papaver somniferum flower with a dark center
A pink Papaver somniferum flower with white center petals and yellow stamens and pistils
A green Papaver somniferum stem with a side-view of a red and purple flower
Papaver somniferum red flower with brown stamens and a hairy green flower bud
Papaver somniferum pink flower with white inner flower petals covered in raindrops
Red Papaver somniferum with brown stamens
Purple-pink Papaver somniferum flowers and  green capsules
A green Papaver somniferum stem with the backside of a red flower with frilly petals and a purple and yellow center

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