Direct-sow Sunflowers are so easy to grow~almost magic

April 22, 2010 at 5:30 PM Leave a comment

John Scheepers Kitchen Garden Seeds

Sunflowers make everyone smile~including the birds and the bees. Capturing the essence of American summer sun and fun, North American native Helianthus annuus has evolved with new color combinations, heights and forms, courtesy of European breeding achievements.

The traditional Sunflower is a huge, towering, bright yellow sun-shaped disk studded with seeds in its darker center. Today, you may choose from orange, red, yellow and bicolor varieties in single, double and crested, and single or multi-flowering forms in a wide range of heights (2’ to 7’). And the birds and bees love them all for their yummy seeds and bountiful perching stations.

Direct-sow Sunflowers are so easy to grow~almost magic Sunflowers are so easy to grow that they should be labeled as verifiable magic. Imagine the joy and amazement of a child, gardening for the first time…all they have to do is to press the seeds into the soil, water them and voila~two months later, immense, gorgeous flowers. How could they help but feel like garden wizards?

Easy to grow in full sunlight, Sunflower seeds should be sown directly into well-draining, loamy soil after the danger of frost has passed. Plant the seeds ½” deep and keep the seedbed uniformly moist until seedlings emerge, about ten days after sowing.  Weed carefully and keep well-watered until established. (You may also start Sunflowers indoors three weeks before the last frost date. Plant seed ½” deep in pots of good seed-starting mix at 65°F to 85°F. Provide even moisture, strong light and good ventilation.) When seedlings are large enough to handle, thin or transplant them 12” to 24” apart in the garden. They will flower about 60 days after seeding. For more continuous summer blooms, direct sow Sunflower seeds every three weeks or so. As spectacular as they are in the garden, they are fabulous cutting flowers for big floor vases or mixed bouquets (with the smaller varieties.) For the best, longest vase life, cut each stem before the flower is fully open.

From am email from John Sheepers  Seed Co.              http://www.kitchengardenseeds.com/cgi-bin/catview.cgi?_fn=Product&_category=75

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Entry filed under: Green Information.

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