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Amber's Organics LLC Medical Herb Seed A-Z > Poppy, California.
Poppy, California.

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Botanical Name of California poppy : Eschscholzia californica

Other Common Names: Golden poppy, copa de oro, khishkhash Kalifornia.

Habitat: The California poppy is native to California but is found along the entire western coast of the United States as far north as Washington State and as far south as Mexico, in addition it has also be found in southern France, Australia and Chile.

Plant Description: The flower is usually golden orange in color, hence its common name “golden poppy.” The receptacle has an expanded rim that holds the young bud with two sepals until it blooms. The stem of the flower grows to approximately 5 to 20 inches tall, with teal colored leaves sprouting from its base. The plant is prolific, with numerous dark colored seeds held in the center of the flower within slender, ribbed single celled seed capsules.

Plant Parts Used: Root, leaves and seeds. Bitter to the taste with subtle euphoric properties, the entire plant of the Californian poppy is harvested in maturity. It's dried and used for medicinal purposes as diffusion, tincture and powder.

Therapeutic Benefits of Californian Poppy


The California Poppy
(Eschscholzia californica )
  • Gentle in effect, the major health properties of the California poppy are sedative, analgesic and antispasmodic in action.
  • As a member of the Papaver somniferum species, this chemically complex plant is considered a sub-opiate. It produces a milder effect than its cousin the red poppy which is the source of opium. Its distinction is found in its ability to normalize psychological functions by influencing the neurotransmitters without depressing the central nervous system.
  • The most common use of this herb is in diffusion for treating the various physical and psychological conditions including insomnia, bedwetting (incontinence), anxiety and nervous tension, particularly in children.
  • Because of its sedative properties, the California poppy has been used in the treatment of behavioral disorders such as ADD, ADHD in children and young adults. In addition this herb has also been proven to improve intellectual capacity, memory and concentration in the elderly.
  • California pappy has been used as an herbal treatment for tooth pain. The odontalgic properties are found in the root of the plant, which is cut and applied directly to the affected area.
  • As a tincture, it is used for its antimicrobial properties applied externally to cuts and scrapes.
  • As an analgesic and antispasmodic, these properties have been found useful in the relief of acute nerve and muscular centered pain. It has been used as a remedy in cases of high fever, rapid pulse and persistent spasmodic cough.
  • A tincture made from the root of California poppy can be prepared as an external wash for suppressing lactation (the production of milk) in breast-feeding women.
  • The leaves of the flower are used externally in powder form for antimicrobial properties as a treatment for the elimination of head lice with the same effectiveness of berberis (mahonia) repens (creeping barberry).