Did You Know This About Sunflowers?
Sunflower is one of the most charming flowers we have come across. This flower is liked by almost everyone everywhere in the world. We have heard partners calling each other ‘Sunshine’ and gifting each other sunflowers to express their love. This is the beauty of the flower. The yellow shine along with the dark-colored seeds in between can change your mood just like that. The fragrance will also help you soothe your soul. Growing a sunflower is gonna leave a positive effect on your mood, you spending time taking care of the plant and watching it grow from day 1 is always adoring.
The cheery bloomers have got a lot of meaning associated with it. The meaning varies depending on various cultural and religious roots. The aspects of sunflower symbolism do always remain constant in legends and mythology. The botanical name being Helianthus annuus comes from the Greek name “Helios” which means sun and “Anthos” which means flowers. So clearly, these flowers love the sun, and you gotta feed them enough sunlight. The word ‘Annuus’ comes from the word annual.
In China, the flower symbolizes longevity and long life. The prolonged constancy and the long life of the flowers do reflect on the buds which always tend to follow the sun across the sky. Also, various faith comes in play with the sunflower. They are also a symbol of worship and faithfulness as the sunflower is completely devoted to the sun. This depicts the worshipper’s devotion to seeking the light – the light of the truth. You might have seen different sunflower images in ancient temples of the Andes. In various parts of America, the flower symbolizes harvest, provision, and bounty.
Not just that, the sunflower seeds have got a lot of benefits as well, they are edible and are also used in producing oil and dye pigments. The stalk pith is also used in making paper. The flowers, as said are also used as gifts in weddings, anniversaries, and birthdays. Kansas is also called the sunflower state. Gifting this flower symbolizes adoration and love. In some places, the flower means a world that is free of nuclear weapons. You might have seen the famous painting of the sunflower by the famous artist Van Gogh. This is one of the most popular painting series by the legend. That’s how famous sunflowers are.
Van Gogh Sunflower
Types of Sunflower
As we have seen how the flower has got different meanings and symbols attached to it. There are different types of sunflowers too. Most of us have seen the common yellow petals. Well, there are many other types –
Reaches a height of 12 feet
As the name suggests, this type of sunflower is one of the biggest ones. The skyscraper sunflower can rise up to a height of 12 feet. Imagine having those giant beauties. They are generally held up by durable stalks and have those 14 inches large petals in them.
Grows up to 15 feet in height
This is one of the tallest ones on our list. They can grow up to 10 to 15 feet in height and about 40 inches across. They do need quite the room to grow so it's best to leave about 3 to 4 feet in between each of them.
The American Giant
Grows 15 feet long
Another giant sunflower is on our list. It's best to section off a corner if you are planning to bring this one in. They can grow up to 15 feet long. The face of the flower can grow up to about a foot in width.
Found in country fairs and flowers shows
They are quite popular and are found in many parts of the world. The height of these plants can range from 9 to 12 feet high. You can easily spot one of them in county fairs and flower shows. They can grow quite easily. They live best in the Mediterranean climate and can start propagating in early April.
Rarest sunflower type
These are not easily found and are one of the rarest type of sunflower. They are found in America. The name comes after Lewis David von Schweintz who was a botanist. The species was discovered in the early 1800s. the average height of the flower is 6.5 feet and can grow up to 16 feet tall.
Orange-red hue petals
This colored sunflower has this beautiful orange and red hues which produces a mix of beautiful brown colors on its petals. The brown clay color the flower has is ideal for the fall displays.
Dark earthy hues
This beautiful flower is famous for its dark earthy hues which range between brown, red, and golden colors. These flowers can grow up to 6 or 9 feet tall and would make the perfect statement in the garden.
Subtle yellow near tip
The gorgeous red and purple hues can get transformed to subtle yellow near the tip side. The 2 feet tall flower looks best in flower beds and borders.
Red wine petals
One of the darkest sunflowers known to date. The deep red wine petals of this flower add the perfect dramatic contrast to the garden. One might not identify it as a sunflower at first.
Burgundy red petals
The consistent and the unique color of the Moulin Rouge, the extravagance of the burgundy red petals look fantastic mainly in the bouquets.
Dwarf sunflower plants | Small sunflower plant
These flowers are pollenless and can grow up to 2 feet tall. They are bi-colored and have a bright orange and red mixture. These are perfect to be grown at home.
Height of 2 feet
They are also known as the ‘dwarf Pacino gold’ which usually grows about 12 to 16 inches long and can attain a max height of 2 feet. They can produce multiple heads on each of the plants and are best suited in large planters.
Popular in bouqets
These don’t grow quite tall and would only get up to 20 inches tall, but the bold golden petals are too attractive. They like to grow in packs and enhance the charm of every place they grow in. The pack of 5 to 8 Suntastic yellows is perfect for the gardens and bouquets.
Sunflower plant leaves
Most of the sunflower plant leaves are heart-shaped and have a triangular orientation. There are distinct sections that are generally separated by a small spine. A sunflower leaf is a generally dark green in color and there are different colored foliage for different types of sunflowers.
Because a sunflower leaf grows in two set at the same time, therefore the sunflowers are considered as dicots – two cotyledons. Many people tell that the leaves are edible and can be included in salads. Although this isn’t a verified fact, so it is better to stick to the edible seeds.
Guide to grow sunflower plant | How to grow sunflower at home
It is best to sow the sunflower seeds directly into the spot in your garden or in the pot. As soon as the danger of the spring frost passes, you are good to go. Don’t ever disturb the sunflower roots, instead of transplanting, direct-sowing is always the better idea.
Choose sunny spot to plant sunflower
As the name suggests, the flower loves the sun. So choose a sunny spot, which would feed the plant about 6 to 8 hours of direct sunlight. They love the hot sun. Well-draining soil is another requirement, pooling of water shouldn’t be allowed especially after rains.
Don’t choose a compact soil, the long taproots need to stretch themselves out – dig up to 2 to 3 feet depth and across. Slightly acidic soil would be fine for them. Remember that sunflower needs plenty of nutrients to thrive, so feed them composted manure or the slow-release granular fertilizers. The plants can grow tall, so do protect them from winds or give them proper support. Have the perfect sunflowers garden.
Growing sunflowers in pots | Indoor sunflower plant
After you buy the seed, choose the right-sized container. Because you are planting them in a pot, choose the dwarf varieties of the sunflowers, a pot can’t store the tall and big flowers. The container must be about 16 inches big. Clean and sterilize the pot if it's an old one. Do ensure that there are proper drainage holes in them. Now select some good quality nutrient-rich topsoil, remember that the plant needs a good amount of nutrients to thrive. Add compost to the soil.
Dig the sunflower seed about an inch, you need to sow the soil about 4 to 5 inches apart if you plant more than one seed. Water the seed every day, the plant needs a good amount of water, especially in the growing stage. Keep them at the watch as the seeds start to germinate. It will grow from sunflower seeds to plant in no time.
Sunflower seeds benefits
Sunflower seed is edible. This is nothing new. But there are many other benefits of sunflower seeds. The seeds can reduce inflammation. They contain Vitamin E and flavonoids which can reduce inflammation in the human body.
The seeds are also good for heart health. They are rich in so-called healthy fats including polyunsaturated fats. Just the 3/4th cup of the seeds contain about 14 gms of fat. They can lower the rate of cardiovascular diseases in your body.
The seeds also support the immune system and boost the energy levels in the body. The seeds contain the following essential nutrients –
How long does it take for a sunflower to grow?
Sunflowers grow quite quickly if provided with the necessary requirements. They can grow up to 12 feet in height in just 3 months. They do reach maturity in 70 – 100 days of planting.
Are sunflowers easy to grow?
They aren’t hard to grow and they grow quickly as well. You just need to ensure that they get the proper amount of sunlight and water and are provided with good quality nutrients.
How do you take care of a sunflower plant?
Sunflower loves the sun. So they must be put in a place where they get 6 to 8 hours of direct sunlight every day. You need to water the soil regularly and feed them compost so they get the required nutrients.
Can sunflowers grow in pots? How do you care for potted sunflowers?
Yes, they can grow in pots. Choose a dwarf-sized plant and a pot about 12 inches in size. Provide them proper support if they need it.
Do sunflower plants need full sun?
Yes, they do. The name suggests so. They love the sun and need about 6 to 8 hours of full sun every day.
What are some sunflower plant facts?
The sunflower resembles growth and prosperity and promotes love. The sunflower seeds are edible and are rich in nutrients. The popular song “You are my sunshine” is based on these flowers.
Why are there white spots on my sunflower sprout?
This is because of the white mold. They attack the sunflowers in cold and moist conditions. You need to space the sunflowers to prevent plant-to-plant contamination and water them early morning so that they dry quickly.
How tall can a sunflower grow?
Different types of sunflowers can have different sizes. The tallest of them can grow up to 16 feet in height.