Les Champs -The Fields

Les Champs The Fields

France remains an agrarian country and a drive from Paris to the south, or any points north, east, or west, will reveal rolling fields of wheat, rye, or barley, dotted here and there with the spires of Gothic churches and villages. The fields might be of sunflower, alfalfa, safflower, or in, the south, lavender. It’s not uncommon in spring to see the fields, especially those of grain, splashed with red poppies, the poppies so eloquently written about by John McCrae in his famous World War I poem, In Flanders Field, and those painted by Claude Monet in Poppies at Argenteuil. In summer, you’ll see fields of sunflowers, like those famously painted by Vincent Van Gogh.

La Vie Rustic Sunflower Seed Collection

I’ve grown lots of different sunflowers to select the ones I really liked to find a range of color of both the petals and the faces  and of differences in petal shapes because I wanted to find the sunflowers that most closely represented the sunflowers painted by Van Gogh in his famous series of seven paintings of sunflower bouquets in vases. On close inspection of the paintings you’ll see the differences among the flowers. Some have wild-looking, spidery petals, others petals are thickly packed like chrysanthemums, and yet others double or single petals. The centers or faces differ as well. Some centers are bright chartreuse green, other chocolate brown or black ringed with orange. Petal colors are brilliant yellow, pale orange, darker orangish-red, reddish, and pale yellow. This link will take you to a site where you can see the seven paintings in the series. http://www.vggallery.com/misc/sunflowers.htm.

When you grow our collection of six different sunflowers you’ll have an array as varied as the sunflowers shown in Van Gogh’s paintings.

All the sunflowers in the collection are cutting flowers, and all are branching types which mean, in addition to a main flower head on the center stalk, there will be numerous side shoots branching out ensuring ongoing bloom over several weeks or longer.

Each individual letterpress printed packet contains approximately 25 seeds.  All germinate within 7-14 days and bloom within 60- 65 days of planting



La Vie Rustic Sunflower Collection….$15.00

Apricot Daisy – Lush, orange single petals surround the chartreuse center.  Branching, grows 4 – 6 feet tall.

Lemon Éclair – Light yellow, multi-layered flower have fluffy inner petals and more pointed outer ones. The center is chocolate colored. Branching, grows 4-6 feet tall.

Terracotta – Orangish-red terracotta flowers have almost daisy-like petals, and a dark brown center. Branching, grown 4-6 feet tall.

Golden Cheer – Fluffy, dark yellow double flowers have a green center ringed with short, dark yellow petals. Branching, grows 4 -6 feet tall.

Chianti – Dark red, wine –colored petals surround a very dark, almost black center. The stems also have a dark tint. Branching, grows 4- 6 feet tall.

Jade- Pale lime-cream, daisy-like petals surround the lime-green center. Branching, grows 3-5 feet tall.(not pictured above)

Field of Red Poppies and Bishop’s Lace Seeds with Rice Hulls for Ease of Spreading

La Vie Rustic has mixed red poppy seeds with Bishop’s Lace seeds, Ammi majus, which is a cultivated version of Queen Anne’s Lace, along with California rice hulls for ease of scattering. With these, you can create your own iconic red poppy fields to wander in, cut bouquets from, or perhaps, even to paint or simply to admire while sipping an aperitif. Plant this mixture of Red Poppies and  Bishop’s Lace flowers wherever you would like a swath of color and romance and remembrance. Photo Thomas Kuoh

Contents: 7 grams Red Poppy and Ammi majus seeds, rice hulls and complete growing instructions, enough to plant 2000 square feet. Germination: 5 to 7 days  When to plant: in  fall in warmer climates and spring in colder climates.

La Vie Rustic Field of Red Poppies and Bishop’s Lace………..$10.00

Photo by Kathryn Kleinman