Sunflowers – A Summertime Flower

I love sunflowers. They are so bright and cheery and remind me so much of summertime. We had them in the wedding bouquets. Luckily, (or maybe I planned it?) sunflowers are still in season in September, which is when we got married.

Wedding Dress with Bouquet

My mom decided to try her hand at starting miniature sunflowers from seed. The package that she received calls the flowers “Dwarf” and they are expected to get to 1-2 feet in height.

She followed the directions on the back of the package and was expecting the seeds to germinate within 7-10 days. However, the first batch of seeds did not germinate so she ordered another batch. Sure enough, the first set germinated late (~ 21 days) as soon as she got the second batch in the soil to germinate 🙂

Since they had so many seedlings when my Dad came through to visit he dropped off a bunch for me!

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I planted each sprout into a pot or container with new pot soil. For some of them, I planted several together which was probably not the best idea since they need about six inches of space between. The closest ones for me are probably in the 4 inch range.

I then generously watered them and put the pots around the deck and one in the front yard. And then the waiting game started! Every so often I would go check on their growth to see if they were close to blooming. Mom did the same at her house in NJ.

As the name implies, sunflowers grow best in full sun. They are hardy flowers and can do well in most soils as long as it has good drainage. The seed, stem, and leaf emit inhibitory growth substances and should not be planted with other garden plants such as beans or potatoes.

If you’ve ever had a bird feeder and filled it with seeds that include sunflower seeds, the hulls that pile up below will eventually kill the grass underneath due to the toxins in the hulls. The toxin is harmless to animals or people and eventually biodegrades in the soil.

Now that the sunflowers were planted, I anxiously awaited the arrival of the flowers!

Mine started blooming a couple of weeks ago and they are gorgeous! I love that they are small so they do not require any sort of tie to keep them growing upwards.

So beautiful! And here are some photos of Mom’s sunflowers.

The ones in NJ look taller and definitely have bigger flowers, probably because hers are spaced appropriately so the plant is getting plenty of nutrients!

The bag for this particular type of sunflower does not indicate that it will produce sunflower seeds for eating, but maybe they will?! The blooms will be beautiful in any bouquet if I decide to cut them for that purpose.

Happy planting!

Sunflowers 

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