The sunflower is one of the most popular floral varieties sold at Radebaugh Florist and Greenhouses. We buy most of the sunflowers we sell from domestic or international flower farms. Our clients really seem to love them and they are especially popular in our Summer and Fall themed arrangements.
There are several varieties of sunflowers. The primary differences in the varieties are the length and girth of the stems and the size and overall dimensions of the bloom. Some sunflowers actually reach over ten feet in height. Plants of that size tend to produce huge yellow blooms. The best varieties of sunflowers for floral design tend to be the smaller variety.
Sunflowers produce an edible seed. Native American Indians used these seeds to create a number of different edible foods. They also used the blooms of the sunflower to create dies for clothing. Sunflower seeds have remained a popular item for many years and today the seeds are used for snacks and to produce sunflower oil for cooking. In addition to cooking sunflower oil is also included in some varnish and plastics and even occasionally used in pet food.
The Sunflower is generally thought to be a native North American floral variety. Truth be known, many of the varieties we know and enjoy today were actually brought to the U.S. from South America and Europe. Sunflower are super easy to plant. They require little if any maintenance. Some farmers in the U.S. plant sunflowers during late Summer, as a way to help pull unwanted chemicals from their farm soil. Sunflowers are known to absorb all types of nutrients and chemicals.
Growing Recommendations – Sunflower
The Sunflower is an annual flower. It must be replanted each year. Sunflowers love sunshine. The more the better. It is also recommended that you plant sunflowers in a field that drain well. Sunflowers grow in a variety of climates. They prefer temperatures in the 70 to 78 degree range. Sunflowers are not choosy about the soil you plant them in. They will grow in nearly any type of soil. In Florida, California and other tropical areas, you can grow sunflowers year around. They will die back in Winter. Harvesting the seeds takes place after the blossom has died back and the petals have almost all fallen off. Cut off the heads and hang them up if possible so that they can dry. Do not stack them or they may become moldy. Flowers can be cut when they are full and used in either fresh or dried arrangements.