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Argemone mexicana L.
Mexican Prickly Poppy, Mexican Prickly Poppy, Yellow Prickly Poppy
Papaveraceae (Poppy Family)
Synonym(s): Argemone leiocarpa
USDA Symbol: arme4
USDA Native Status: L48 (N), HI (I), PR (N), VI (N), CAN (W)
The yellow prickly poppy, 8-18 inches tall, has a smooth or slightly prickly stem. The deeply lobed leaves are a whitish green, and the upper ones clasp the stem between their two lower lobes. The upper surface of the leaf is smooth. Flowers are yellow, about 2 1/2 inches across. The sap from this plant is bright yellow.
This thistle-leaved species occurs from Virginia and Tennessee to Florida and Texas and has escaped from cultivation northward.
From the Image Gallery
Plant CharacteristicsDuration: Annual
Root Type: Tap
Leaf Arrangement: Alternate
Leaf Complexity: Simple
Leaf Margin: Dentate
Breeding System: Flowers Bisexual
Fruit Type: Capsule
Size Notes: Up to about 32 inches tall.
Bloom InformationBloom Color: Yellow
Bloom Time: Jan , Feb , Mar , Apr , May , Jun , Jul , Aug , Sep , Oct , Nov , Dec
Bloom Notes: May flower year-round in the southern part of it's range.
DistributionUSA: AL , AZ , CT , DC , DE , FL , GA , HI , IA , IL , IN , KS , LA , MA , MD , MI , MO , MS , NC , NJ , NY , OH , PA , SC , TN , TX , VA , VT
Native Distribution: Virginia and Tennessee south to Florida and west to Texas; spreading northward to New England, Great Lakes, and Midwest.
Native Habitat: Disturbed areas.
Growing ConditionsWater Use: Low
Light Requirement: Sun
Soil Moisture: Dry
Soil pH: Acidic (pH<6.8)
Soil Description: Sandy
BenefitWarning: Seeds and other plant parts can be toxic if ingested. Sensitivity to a toxin varies with a personís age, weight, physical condition, and individual susceptibility. Children are most vulnerable because of their curiosity and small size. Toxicity can vary in a plant according to season, the plantís different parts, and its stage of growth; and plants can absorb toxic substances, such as herbicides, pesticides, and pollutants from the water, air, and soil.
Conspicuous Flowers: yes
BibliographyBibref 281 - Shinners & Mahler's Illustrated Flora of North Central Texas (1999) Diggs, G. M.; B. L. Lipscomb; B. O'Kennon; W. F...
Bibref 248 - Texas Wildflowers: A Field Guide (1984) Loughmiller, C. & L. Loughmiller
Bibref 328 - Wildflowers of Texas (2003) Ajilvsgi, Geyata.
Bibref 286 - Wildflowers of the Texas Hill Country (1989) Enquist, M.
Search More Titles in Bibliography
Web ReferenceWebref 57 - Atlas of Florida Plants (2020) Institute for Systematic Botany
Webref 38 - Flora of North America (2019) Missouri Botanical Garden, St. Louis, MO & Harvard University Herbaria, Cambridge, MA.
Webref 23 - Southwest Environmental Information Network (2009) SEINet - Arizona Chapter
Additional resourcesUSDA: Find Argemone mexicana in USDA Plants
FNA: Find Argemone mexicana in the Flora of North America (if available)
Google: Search Google for Argemone mexicana
MetadataRecord Modified: 2022-11-21
Research By: TWC Staff