Papaver rhoeas

Tracheophyta MagnoliopsidaPapaveraceaePapaverPapaver rhoeas


An annual of arable fields and other disturbed and open habitats. It is most frequent on light, calcareous soils. It is sensitive to herbicide, but can be abundant in unsprayed strips in fields. Its seed can be very long-lived. It is also frequent in wild-flower seed mixtures and occurs as a garden escape. Lowland.



World Distribution

As an archaeophyte P. rhoeas has a European Southern-temperate distribution; it is widely naturalised outside this range.

© Shannon, P

Broad Habitats

Light (Ellenberg): 7

Moisture (Ellenberg): 5

Reaction (Ellenberg): 7

Nitrogen (Ellenberg): 6

Salt Tolerance (Ellenberg): 0

January Mean Temperature (Celsius): 3.8

July Mean Temperature (Celsius): 15.3

Annual Precipitation (mm): 877

Height (cm): 60

Perennation - primary


Life Form - primary

Therophyte (annual land plant)



Clonality - primary

Little or no vegetative spread

Count of 10km squares in Great Britain: 1712

Count of 10km squares in Ireland: 370

Count of 10km squares in the Channel Isles: 14

Atlas Change Index: -0.41

Weighted Changed Factor: 10

Weighted Change Factor Confidence (90%)


JNCC Designations