Eschscholzia californica Cham.
California poppy
Papaveraceae (Fumitory family)

Introduction to Vascular Plants


© Neil L. Jennings     (Photo ID #9649)


E-Flora BC Static Map

Distribution of Eschscholzia californica
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Species Information

Perennial herb from a deep taproot; stems spreading to erect, simple, solitary to several, 10-50 cm tall, smooth, with clear juice.
Basal leaves blue-green, blades triangular, 3-times divided in threes, the ultimate segments linear, 4-14 cm long, the stalks 6-20 cm long; stem leaves few, similar, alternate, reduced above.
Inflorescence of axillary or terminal saucer-shaped flowers on stalks 6-20 cm long; petals 4, orange-yellow, 0.8-4 cm long, sepals 2, forming a long cone in bud.
Capsules, linear, 3-9 cm long; seeds round to ellipsoid, 1.5-1.8 mm long, strongly ridged in a net-veined pattern.

SourceThe Illustrated Flora of British Columbia


If more than one illustration is available for a species (e.g., separate illustrations were provided for two subspecies) then links to the separate images will be provided below. Note that individual subspecies or varietal illustrations are not always available.

USDA Species Characteristics

Flower Colour:
Blooming Period:
Late Spring
Fruit/Seed characteristics:
Colour: Brown
Present over the Summer
Source:  The USDA

Habitat and Range

Dry roadsides, rock outcrops and waste places in the lowland zone; infrequent on SE Vancouver Island, the Gulf Islands and adjacent mainland; introduced from the W U.S.

SourceThe Illustrated Flora of British Columbia