The plant prefers to grow on roadsides and in grain fields and is distributed worldwide. The red flowers used medicinally and as a fining drug in tea mixtures come mainly from wild occurrences in Eastern and Southeastern Europe and Morocco.

The flowers of the poppy (Papaveris rhoeados flos) are used in herbal medicine.

Corn poppy and its characteristics

Corn poppy is an annual plant, up to 80 cm high, that is often found along roadsides or on the edges of grain fields. The stems have bristly hairs, the leaves are pinnate once or twice.

Corn poppies initially have hanging flower buds, which straighten up shortly before flowering and produce the characteristic delicate, bright red petals. These were also used in the past to make red ink.

Corn poppy also has a fruit capsule that is about 1 cm long.

Corn poppies as medicine

The drug material consists of the dark red to dark purple crumpled petals. These feel velvety to felt-like, have entire margins and are around 4-6 cm in size. At the base of the petals, these have a black spot that comes out particularly well when soaked in water.

Corn poppy does not emit any particular smell, the plant is more or less odorless. Corn poppies  taste  slimy and somewhat bitter.

Corn poppy – application

Corn poppy flowers are used exclusively in folk medicine and as a fining drug in tea mixtures. Since the effectiveness of the flowers has not yet been scientifically proven, the therapeutic use is not advocated.

There is currently no approved finished medicinal product with a defined indication. Corn poppies were also rated negatively by Commission E.

Corn poppies for beauty

However, there are no objections to the use of the flowers as a fining drug, i.e. to give the  tea  a nicer appearance.

Folk medicinal use of poppies

In folk medicine, poppy flowers are used for diseases and complaints related to the respiratory tract, such as coughs and  hoarseness  . In the case of inflammation of the mucous membranes of the respiratory tract or bronchi, the drug can help loosen mucus and thus improve expectoration.

In addition, tea preparations made from poppy flowers can be used for pain and insomnia and as a sedative. Mainly, however, poppies are a part of various tea blends as a fining drug.

There are no references in the literature to the  homeopathic  use of the flowers.

Ingredients of poppy flowers

Corn poppy flowers contain anthocyanins such as cyanidin and flavonoid glycosides such as hyperoside, rutin and astragalin. Camphor oil, luteolin, quercetin and other phenolic compounds also occur. The drug also contains mucilage.

Corn poppies: indication

Poppy flowers are only used in folk medicine for:

  • Cough
  • hoarseness
  • respiratory symptoms
  • Pains
  • insomnia
  • restlessness

Corn poppy – dosage

Corn poppies are part of some tea blends as a decorative drug. In Germany there is no herbal remedy from the flowers, in France there is an extract of the flowers that is used for  sleep disorders  .

It is not possible to recommend a daily dose because the flowers have not yet been researched enough.

Corn poppies: preparation

To prepare a tea from corn poppy flowers, 2 teaspoons of the drug (1 teaspoon corresponds to about 0.8 g) are poured over with boiling water, left to steep for 10 minutes and then passed through a tea strainer. A cup of the   tea, which may be sweetened with honey , can be drunk 2-3 times a day to improve mucus dissolution in the case of congested airways or bronchi.

Interactions with other means and contraindications are currently not known.

Storage of poppy flowers

Corn poppy flowers should be kept dry and protected from light. The buds should be used within a year or they will fade and become unsightly.

Corn poppy – synonyms

German plant name: Klatschmohn
German synonyms of the plant: Field Poppy, Rattle Rose, Rattle Poppy, Flutter Poppy, Great Corn Rose, Corn Rose, Corn Buckle, Blood Flower, Fire Poppy, Fire Flower, Field Rose, Buckle, Wolder Poppy
Latin plant name: Papaver rhoeas L.
Latin synonyms of the plant: The erratic poppy
German drug name: corn poppies
German synonyms of the drug: field poppy flowers, rattle rose flowers, rattle poppy flowers, flutter poppy flowers, corn rose flowers, corn rose flowers, grain buckle flowers, blood flower flowers, fire flower flowers, field rose flowers
Latin drug name: Poppy rose flower
Latin synonyms of the drug: Flowers (petals) of the poppy rhoeados
English name: Red poppy petals, Corn poppy flowers (Droge); Common Poppy, Common Red Poppy, Corn poppy, Field poppy, Flanders poppy, Red poppy, Shirley poppy (Pflanze)
Plant family Latin: Papaveraceae
Plant family German: poppies


Corn poppy – effect

It is still largely unclear whether poppies have an effect, and if so, how. Anthocyanins are responsible for the red color of the flowers.

Corn poppy: side effects

According to some reports, eating fresh parts of the plant can cause nausea and  stomach pain in children  . The fruits of the poppy are considered to be slightly poisonous. However, the dried flowers have been classified as non-toxic.

Interactions with other means and contraindications are currently not known.


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