Meconopsis betonicifolia

Meconopsis betonicifolia

Meconopsis betonicifolia, sometimes called the Himalayan blue poppy, was first noted in 1886 by Pére Delavay a French Catholic missionary.

In 1922, a specimen was collected by Lt. Col. Frederick Marshman Bailey. Pressed into a notebook, the quality of the specimen was not excellent but it still created great interest in England.

In 1924, Frank Kingdon-Ward, the explorer and plant collector, brought back the first viable seed and, in 1927, it was displayed at horticultural shows and there were large plantings in public parks in London and Edinburgh.

M. betonicifolia is hardy in most of the United Kingdom and it has striking large blue flowers but it probably owes much of its success to the fact that, unlike most Meconopsis, it is perennial.

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