Argemone mexicana

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Yellow Prickly-poppy


Plant Specifics

Size:to 3 ft tall by 1 ft wide
Life Span:Annual
Flower Color:Yellow
Fruit Color:Green
Noted for:Showy flowers, Thorns


Recommended Uses:Wildflower garden. Roadside wildflower areas. This plant blooms from late winter into spring displaying its large flowers when little else is blooming in the garden.
Considerations:Sharp thorn-like prickles cover most of the plant. Highly toxic.
Propagation:Seed can easily be gathered where this plant grows along roadsides. Throw it in open areas in the wildflower garden and expect it to self-seed in future years.
Light: Full Sun
Moisture Tolerance:
always floodedextremely dry
 (Somewhat moist, no flooding ----- to ----- Very long very dry periods)
Moisture Tolerance: Somewhat moist, no flooding ----- to ----- Very long very dry periods
Salt Water Flooding Tolerance:Not salt tolerant of inundation by salty or brackish water.
Salt Spray/ Salty Soil Tolerance:Low/no tolerance of salty wind or direct salt spray
Soil or other substrate:Sand
Soil pH:Circum-neutral to calcareous.



Attracts pollinators including bees, flies, and beetles.  Documented bee species include  Apis mellifera (honeybee), Dialictus tegularis, and Halictus ligatus (Deyrup et al. 2002).

Native Habitats:Ruderal areas. Common on dry roadsides.

Distribution and Planting Zones

Natural Range in Florida
USDA Zones

Suitable to grow in:
10A 10B 8A 8B 9A 9B 

USDA zones are based on minimum winter temperatures


General Comments:This is one of Florida's most showy and most under-appreciated wildflowers. Look for it along disturbed roadsides in mid-late winter and early spring.