When can I plant Oriental poppies in Zone 9a

One of the first steps we take when we are determining our gardening schedule is find our USDA Zone info. The zone info helps tell us things like average date of last frost and lowest expected temperature for our area.

By referring to the USDA zone info for Zone 9a you should be able to estimate when it's a good idea to plant oriental poppies.


Planting Calendar for Oriental poppies

Frost tolerance for oriental poppies: Tolerant of some frost.
When you should plant them: Up to 5 weeks before last frost.

Oriental poppies are one of those plants that can tolerate a little bit of cold weather which tells us that you can start planting them earlier than more sensitive plants.

JanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec
Legend 
A good time to plant oriental poppies
Possibly ok, but a risky time to plant oriental poppies
Probably not a good time to plant oriental poppies

The earliest that you can plant oriental poppies in Zone 9a is January. However, you really should wait until February if you don't want to take any chances.

The last month that you can plant oriental poppies and expect a good harvest is probably October. You probably don't want to wait any later than that or else your oriental poppies may not have a chance to grow to maturity. Starting your oriental poppies indoors is a great way to get them started a couple of weeks earlier.

Last Frost Date

In Zone 9a the average date of last frost happens on February 15. It might get as low as 20°F during the coldest months of winter.

It's important to remember that our actual date of last frost is an average because it is based on the USDA zone info for Zone 9a and it will vary from year to year. Half of the time in Zone 9a it frosts late in the year after February 15 so make sure that you are ready to protect your oriental poppies in the event of a late frost.

USDA Zone Info for Zone 9a

Here is the info for USDA Zone 9a.

Average Date of Last Frost (spring)February 15
Average Date of First Frost (fall)December 15
Lowest Expected Low20°F
Highest Expected Low25°F

This means that on a really cold year, the coldest it will get is 20°F. On most years you should be prepared to experience lows near 25°F.

Plants to Grow in Zone 9a

You may be interested in our other planting guides for Zone 9a.