Anemone coronaria – not the virus, the Poppy anemone!

Single red poppy anemone in field

Anemone coronaria is a unique and very decorative bulb flower. Its brilliant red bloom is similar to that of the poppy flower.

Key points to remember

NameAnemone coronaria
FamilyRanunculaceae
Type – Tuberous perennial

Height – 2 to 12 inches (5 to 30 cm)
Exposure – Full sun and part sun
Soil – ordinary, well drained

Flowering – March to May or September/October

It will decorate edges and rocky ground but also flower beds and bouquets in spring or summer. If you’ve got a terrace or balcony, it will also grow well in garden boxes and containers.

How to plant poppy anemone

Poppy anemone is a tuber plant. Since they’re round and flat like those of cyclamen, some people call them “patties”. You must place the tubers in the ground in spring or in fall (preference for fall) and always in well drained soil, or even sandy soil, to avoid any excess moisture that might lead the bulbs to rot.

  • Two-color double-flowered anemone coronariaFirst of all, soak the tuber roots for 1 or 2 hours in water. They’ll swell as they take the water in.
  • Bury the flattish bulbs more or less 2 inches (5 cm) deep.
  • One side is studded with “buds”: it should face up to the sky.
  • Space the tubers about 8 inches (20 cm) apart.
  • Try planting several patties near one another at the same spot, this will make for a very appealing landscaping effect called clustering.

Propagating Anemone coronaria It is very simple to do, and it’s even recommended to multiply your poppy anemones every 2 or 3 years to regenerate the growth base and thus rejuvenate older bulbs.

  • Multiply through crown division in spring or in fall (again, preference for fall).
  • Check on our tips on how to divide perennials.

Caring for Anemone coronaria

There’s no trimming needed, but you can still eliminate flowers as they wilt away. This triggers renewed blooming.

Once all the leaves have dried out, and in no case before they have done so, you can cut them off very short before winter. Simply spread the cut leaves together with other dried leaves over the root tubers to protect them from the cold.

You can either leave the tubers in the ground, or dig them out for storage indoors in a cool, dry spot that doesn’t freeze over.

Learn more about poppy anemone

Most anemone species bloom several times during the year from Spring to Fall, but Anemone coronaria only blooms until the end of Summer. Note that the name “Spanish marigold” also designates this Anemone coronaria.

A perfect fit for perennial flower beds, or to line edges and mixed borders, you can even use poppy anemone as a wonderful bouquet flower. In Israel, part of the region where this flower is native to, magnificent expanses of this beautiful flower attract flocks of tourists.

Other species and varieties of spring-blooming anemones include Anemone blanda or Grecian windflower, Anemone apennina. On the other hand, anemone species that bloom in Summer or Fall typically include the famous Japanese anemone, Anemone bupehensis and Anemone rivularis which is actually the earliest summer bloomer. These are all perfect for lining edges, and also will thrive in underbrush or to cover a bare surface.

Flowers are generally blue or white, but some species will boast red or purple flowers. They appear in spring, around April to May.

Smart tip about Poppy Anemone

Watch out if you have children because this plant is poisonous. It shouldn’t be ingested.

Poppy anemone is easy to care for


Credits for images shared to Nature & Garden (all edits by Gaspard Lorthiois):
Red with a bang! by Zachi Evenor ☆ under © CC BY-SA 2.0
Double-flowered with two colors by Teodor ★ under Pixabay license
Violet poppy anemone by Thomas James Caldwell ☆ under © CC BY-SA 2.0