I’m Growing Ladybirds!

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Discovering a Different Variety of Poppy

Well, I have to admit that my ‘Ladybirds’ are in fact a wonderful bright and cheerful variety of the poppy. These poppies have crimson red flowers and a distinctive black blotch at the base of each one that look similar to the spots on a ladybird, hence the name ‘Poppy Ladybird’.

The first time I saw these poppies growing in my sister’s garden I fell in love with them. I just couldn’t wait to plant some seeds in my own garden.

All poppies are easy to grow and I grow lots of different varieties. I was particularly excited about giving this variety a try and so I bought a packet of seeds, scattered them around the garden, and waited in anticipation!

They have just started to flower and I think they are beautiful; they are such a beautiful rich red and of course the name just captures the imagination - they really do look like ladybirds!

I believe they are now my favourite variety of poppy.

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A Gardener's Friend

As a gardener, I welcome ladybirds into the garden. Ladybirds are a gardener’s best friend as they are natural allies against devastating aphids (greenfly).

A few interesting facts about our friend the Ladybird

  • Why is the Ladybird so called? ‘Lady’ refers to the Virgin Mary who in early paintings is seen wearing a red cloak, 7 spots are symbolic of the 7 joys and 7 sorrows of Mary.
  • The Ladybird is also known as the Ladybug.
  • The Ladybird is a colourful beetle that is found all around the world.
  • There are more than 5,000 species of Ladybird.
  • There are more than 450 species inNorth Americaalone.
  • There are 46 species inBritain.
  • 7 Spot Ladybirds are the most common.
  • Ladybirds can consume up to 5000 aphids during their year-long life.
  • Some Ladybirds feed on plants or mildew.
  • Their spots do not relate to their age; when an adult Ladybird is formed it stays the same size and keeps the same amount of spots.
  • Their bright colour warns predators that they are ‘not tasty’.
  • Ladybirds are best known for being red and black but are often orange and yellow.
  • It is good luck if one lands on you.
  • It’s bad luck if you squash it!
  • Ladybirds hibernate in winter months in communal fashion.
  • Ladybirds are prey to birds, reptiles, amphibians, small mammals, rodents and other insects.
  • They lay more than 2000 eggs a year, which hatch in a few days.
  • The larvae hatches out of the eggs; they are long in shape and generally one colour. After a couple of weeks the larvae evolves into a ladybird pupa which has a protective layer surrounding it, until it develops wings. It then breaks out of the skin to become an adult.
  • Ladybirds secrete small amounts of oily foul-smelling yellow liquid from its legs as a warning to predators such as ants or birds.
  • Ladybirds are a deterrent against garden pests; they eat greenfly and small caterpillars and also help pollinate plants.
  • Ladybirds are also regarded with respect and affection by most, because as children we recognised them through rhymes and stories, can’t say I ever really understood this one though….

Ladybird, ladybird fly away home,

Your house is on fire and

Your children are gone,

All except one and that’s little Ann

For she crept under the frying pan.


And lastly, it’s sad to add that due to climate changes and habitat loss, the ladybird is now considered to be a species threatened with extinction.

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On a brighter note, I hope you will try growing ‘Ladybird Poppies’ as they are just beautiful and make a bright colourful addition to the garden. Don’t forget to keep some seeds for next year and to give to friends.

Happy gardening!

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Comments 51 comments

Peggy W profile image

Peggy W 5 years ago from Houston, Texas

What gorgeous Ladybird poppies! Thanks for brightening my day with a splash of beauty and also for more information about ladybugs. Must you replant the poppies from seed each year or do they reseed themselves?


AutumnLockwood profile image

AutumnLockwood 5 years ago from Northern California

Wow I had no idea that ladybugs were threatened, we seem them constantly in our yard. And...your ladybird poppy pictures were lovely :)


Movie Master profile image

Movie Master 5 years ago from United Kingdom Author

Hi Peggy, these poppies are happy flowers! they are so bright and colourful, they just brighten your day and make you smile!! the poppies are perennials so if left in place they will self-seed, when their seed pods are dry just turn them upside down and give them a shake and spread more seeds for next year. Thank you for dropping by and have a great day!


Movie Master profile image

Movie Master 5 years ago from United Kingdom Author

Hi Autumnlockwood, it's nice to see you here today, thank you for visiting I'm glad you enjoyed the pictures. It's so sad that our ladybird is threatened, we definitely don't see so many here these days. Thank you for your comments and have a good day!


Dexter Yarbrough profile image

Dexter Yarbrough 5 years ago from United States

Hi Movie Master! Thanks for sharing such awesome information. The poppy ladybirds are beautiful. Now I am armed with information on ladybirds in case I run into them on another adventure! Voted up, up and away!


Movie Master profile image

Movie Master 5 years ago from United Kingdom Author

Hi Dex, what a great start to my day, you really made me laugh, thank you! I am so looking forward to reading part 2 of your adventure!! have a wonderful happy day!


DTroth profile image

DTroth 5 years ago from My Little Hole In The Wall, HubPages, USA

Hi Duckie...

I never knew there were more varieties of poppies than just the orange ones in the Poppy fields in California. I guess I'd better pull my head out of the flower pot now and start lookin' around!

What beautiful Ladybird Poppy's you have! So healthy and vibrant. Absolutely stunning pictures!

And, I did know there were more than one kind of "Ladybird" (we call 'em "Ladybugs" here in the U.S.), but I had NO IDEA there were THAT MANY varieties! I also didn't realize they were carnivorous. Or that they lived for only a year. Or that they can lay 2,000 eggs! Wow! ...and I thought giving birth to just ONE was bad! (hee hee) And they're on the endangered species list? Does that include ALL of the species or just certain ones?

You have taught me so much today! Thank you!

Voted UP, useful, awesome and beautiful.

take care, Duckie,

Diana

P.S. Yea, what's up with that "children's" rhyme? Kind of a bummer. Adults were pretty twisted back in them days...geeesh. (:


Charlu profile image

Charlu 5 years ago from Florida

What absolutely gorgeous poppies, they are so brilliant in color. I love ladybugs (as we call them here) What I didn't know was all the info on them that just amazes me. I try to learn something new everyday and you definitely helped me fill my quota. Awesome hub and voted all the ups. I think I would have saved this one for the contest you probably would have won. Thanks for sharing and take care


always exploring profile image

always exploring 5 years ago from Southern Illinois

Beautiful Poppies. Ladybugs are so cute. Your pictures are lovely. Thank you.

Cheers


Movie Master profile image

Movie Master 5 years ago from United Kingdom Author

Hi Diana, what a delight to see you here, I love reading all you write, whether it's a hub or a comment, you always manage to make me laugh! the ladybird cramms quite a bit into that 1 year life!! all ladybird species are under threat, a very sad thought, your right that childrens rhyme is quite gruesome! glad you enjoyed it have a great day and see you soon!


Movie Master profile image

Movie Master 5 years ago from United Kingdom Author

Hi Charlu, thanks for visiting and for your wonderful comments, I'm glad you enjoyed the hub, ladybirds really are awesome little creatures. Hope you have a lovely day!


Movie Master profile image

Movie Master 5 years ago from United Kingdom Author

Hi always exploring, thank you so much for dropping by and your comments, we are really enjoying these beautiful poppies in our garden!


Sueswan 5 years ago

Movie Master like the 'Poppy Ladybird' you have made me smile and brightened my day. :-)


Movie Master profile image

Movie Master 5 years ago from United Kingdom Author

Hi Sueswan, that's great - it's mission accomplised! :-)

take care and I hope you have a really super day!


Sueswan 5 years ago

I wish you a really super day too Movie Master!:-)


marcoujor profile image

marcoujor 5 years ago from Jeffersonville PA

What a gorgeous flower-- thank you for sharing so much cool information! This always reminds me of my favorite scene in the Wizaed of Oz, so I was attracted when I saw what this Ladybird is-- Voted UP & UAB! Take care, mar.


Movie Master profile image

Movie Master 5 years ago from United Kingdom Author

Hi mar, aren't they gorgeous! everyone is admiring them in my garden, glad you enjoyed the info too, have a great weekend and thanks for visiting!


2uesday profile image

2uesday 5 years ago from - on the web, I am 2uesday.

I have never seen these amazing poppies before. It would be lovely to have them in the garden in a place where children could see them growing. Voted this hub as beautiful.


Movie Master profile image

Movie Master 5 years ago from United Kingdom Author

Hi 2uesday, this is the first time I have grown the ladybird poppy and since I wrote this hub, hundreds of them are now flowering, they have given me so much pleasure, their colour is so vibrant and their name so apt, yes they would be an ideal flower for children to grow and enjoy. Thank you for visiting and commenting, take care and have a wonderful day:-)


sofs profile image

sofs 5 years ago

Amazing looking poppies, have seen them before.. Or may be I should say amusing.. they just made me smile :)


Movie Master profile image

Movie Master 5 years ago from United Kingdom Author

Hi sofs, yes I think they should have been called the amusing ladybird poppies! I must look at them a hundred times a day in the garden they make me smile everytime, thank you for visiting and your comments, much appreciated take care:-)


acaetnna profile image

acaetnna 5 years ago from Guildford

I absolutely adore the ladybird poppy - simply stunning - just like your hub!!!


Movie Master profile image

Movie Master 5 years ago from United Kingdom Author

Hi acaetnna, it's nice to see you thank you for calling in and your comments, it's a beautiful poppy and just makes you smile! hope you have a fabulous weekend!


Jo_Goldsmith11 profile image

Jo_Goldsmith11 5 years ago

I love lady birds! :) I will have to add the flower to the collection in my garden next year. I think it's neat about how the lady bird received it's name. I didn't know that it was from the virgin Mary. Really cool. I learned something new today. Thank you! :) blessings!

voted up! awesome and beautiful


Movie Master profile image

Movie Master 5 years ago from United Kingdom Author

Hi Jo, these poppies have given me so much pleasure, they are an absolute delight in the garden, hope you get to grow some next year!

Glad you enjoyed the hub, many thanks for visiting and your great comments, take care.


iguidenetwork profile image

iguidenetwork 4 years ago from Austin, TX

Very beautiful!


Movie Master profile image

Movie Master 4 years ago from United Kingdom Author

Hello iguidenetwork, it's nice to meet you, thank you for visiting my garden and your comments, it's much appreciated, best wishes MM


alinamassy profile image

alinamassy 4 years ago from India

You have good information of Ladybird. Thanks for sharing this.


Movie Master profile image

Movie Master 4 years ago from United Kingdom Author

Hi alinamassy, thank you for dropping by and your comments, I'm glad you enjoyed it, best wishes.


Kris Heeter profile image

Kris Heeter 4 years ago from Indiana

Beautiful poppy! I've always wanted to try and grow some but haven't made that leap yet.


Movie Master profile image

Movie Master 4 years ago from United Kingdom Author

Hi Kris, these poppies are so easy to grow, now is a good time to plant a few seeds to give a lovely colourful display through the summer. I kept some seedheads to plant this year, but I might not need to as lots self seeded and the plants are just starting to make an appearance!

Many thanks for your comments, best wishes.


Sunshine625 profile image

Sunshine625 4 years ago from Orlando, FL

Ladybugs are the only bug that I would touch. Thank you for all th information about them:) Poppies are a beautiful flower.


Seeker7 profile image

Seeker7 4 years ago from Fife, Scotland

MM! This is a wonderful hub. I love poppies but it's the first time I've seen this kind - they are awesome!! No wonder you are so proud of them and love them. The colours and design are stunning. What a beautiful addition to any garden.

Isn't it strange how most of us get the heebies with creepy-crawlies, but with the ladybird - and also the tiny lucky spider - we don't seem to bother, in fact we're the opposite to the usual 'yuck' feelings! As you rightly say, perhaps it's because we do read about them from such a young age. But I also think it's because they are so pretty and nearly everyone likes them. It's a shame that this great friend of the garden and to nature is endangered. But I think many gardeners as well as conservationists are working hard to ensure that this wonderful little bug doesn't die off! Having your poppies and other flowers around will definately help your local population!

Wonderful hub + voted up awesome!


bell du jour profile image

bell du jour 4 years ago from Ireland

Hi MM, what pretty flowers! Thank you for sharing your tips and lovely photos. Like everyone else the ladybird is the only insect I would even consider allowing to crawl on my hand! Have a great day:-)

Bell


Sunnie Day 4 years ago

Hi Lesly,

What beautiful fun flowers. Will have to try these varities in the spring. I am just wanting to get outside in some warmer weather! Thanks for a great hub with beautiful pictures as well.

Sunnie


homesteadbound profile image

homesteadbound 4 years ago from Texas

I love poppies, and this one is stunning. Other than the wild ones that are seen in the spring, I do not see many growing around here. I wonder if it is just plain too hot. After reading this, I am going to have to check into it.


jacqui2011 profile image

jacqui2011 4 years ago from Leicester, United Kingdom

Hi MM. This variety of poppy is absolutely gorgeous. Such a beautiful shade of red. Great photographs. I love poppies. Very interesting hub, and I learned some facts about ladybirds that I never knew. Voted up and interesting. Take care.


Peggy W profile image

Peggy W 4 years ago from Houston, Texas

Thanks for answering my question although I am a bit late in coming back. Nice to know that ladybird poppies are perennials and reseed themselves. May try some in my garden beds this year. Thanks!


RTalloni profile image

RTalloni 4 years ago from the short journey

What a treat to discover your ladybird hub on this chchchcillly day! :)

Such an interesting read about the poppy and what we call ladybugs. Thanks to a university experiment gone wild we've had many ladybugs in our region. They will continue to thrive, hopefully. Because yours are so beautiful I'm wondering if I have the space for poppies! Thanks for sharing!


Movie Master profile image

Movie Master 4 years ago from United Kingdom Author

Hi Sunshine, I agree, ladybirds are so pretty you forget they are actually a bug! Many thanks for dropping by and your comments, best wishes Lesley


Movie Master profile image

Movie Master 4 years ago from United Kingdom Author

Hi Seeker7, the best thing about poppies is they are so easy to grow, they produced a beautiful array of colour in the garden last year and because so many self seeded, this year I will have even more!

I agree the ladybird is so pretty, we don't have the same aversion to this little bug! let's hope they start increasing in numbers again.

Thank you so much for your great comments and votes, best wishes.


Movie Master profile image

Movie Master 4 years ago from United Kingdom Author

Hi Bell, it's always nice to see you - the ladybird is certainly one of the more popular bugs!

Many thanks for your comments, take care. Lesley


Movie Master profile image

Movie Master 4 years ago from United Kingdom Author

Hi Sunnie, yes roll on spring so we can get outside and do a bit in the garden! I hope you get to plant some of these poppy seeds, they really do brighten up the garden!

Many thanks for visiting and your comments, take care. Lesley


Movie Master profile image

Movie Master 4 years ago from United Kingdom Author

Hi Cindy, these poppies are such a deep rich red, they are quite stunning, I hope you can manage to grow some! Thank you for visiting and your comments, see you soon!


Movie Master profile image

Movie Master 4 years ago from United Kingdom Author

Hi Jacqui, I collected lots of seed heads last year and have given them to neighbours and friends, so we will all be enjoying them this summer! Thank you for visiting, your great comments and votes, best wishes Lesley


Movie Master profile image

Movie Master 4 years ago from United Kingdom Author

Hi Peggy, thanks for visiting again, I have quite a few poppies coming up that have self seeded as well as the seeds I've kept, so I am expecting an even bigger display this year! hope you get to grow some, best wishes.


Movie Master profile image

Movie Master 4 years ago from United Kingdom Author

Hi RTalloni, the university experiment sounds intriguing! these poppy plants are quite small, so hopefully you could squeeze some in, inbetween plants. Many thanks for dropping by on your chilly day and your great comments, best wishes Lesley


vasantha  T k profile image

vasantha T k 4 years ago from Bangalore

Interesting and informative hub on lady bird. Voted up . Best wishes


Movie Master profile image

Movie Master 4 years ago from United Kingdom Author

Hi vasantha, thank you for visiting, your comments and votes are much appreciated, have a wonderful day, best wishes Lesley


stars439 profile image

stars439 4 years ago from Louisiana, The Magnolia and Pelican State.

Beautiful poppies, and the little red beatle with the black spots is just as lovely, and colorful. Great hub, and God Bless You Dear Heart.


Movie Master profile image

Movie Master 4 years ago from United Kingdom Author

Hi stars, thank you for visiting I always enjoy your company, I'm glad you've enjoyed the poppies they are so bright and cheerful - guaranteed to brighten your day!

Take care and best wishes to you and your family, Lesley

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