About Showy Sunflower: Sunflowers were named for their habit of turning their faces to the sun. At the beginning of the development they exhibit heliotropism, or following the sun in its course from east to west, though the mature blossoms usually end up facing straight east. These are said to be the happiest of flowers, and in the language of flowers they symbolize loyalty and constancy.
Showy Sunflower Germination: Direct sow in late fall, planting the seeds ½” deep. For spring planting, mix the seed with moist sand and store it in the refrigerator for 30 days before direct sowing. To start indoors, sow seeds in a flat or individual peat pots, keeping the soil lightly moist and at a temperature of 65-70 degrees F until germination, which usually occurs within 10-20 days. Keep the seedlings moist. When the weather has warmed and the seedlings are well established, transplant outdoors. This plant adapts well to clay soil.
Growing Showy Sunflower Seeds: This plant tolerates drought, though it flourishes with regular moisture. It spreads by rhizomes and can be aggressive, especially in moist or rich soil. Deadhead the flowers for prolonged blooming. Plants growing in partial shade or moist soil will reach taller than usual heights, and may need staking or support. This plant attracts bees and butterflies.
Harvesting Showy Sunflower: For fresh flowers, cut long stems of flowers that have just opened and place them in water immediately; strip the leaves that will fall below the water.
Saving Showy Sunflower Seeds: This plant is a hybrid and will not produce viable seed.
Detailed Showy Sunflower Info: Origin: US Native Other Common Names: Cheerful Sunflower, Perennial Sunflower Duration: Perennial Bloom Time: Late Summer Height: 36-60 inches Spacing: 18-24 inches Light: Full Sun to Part Shade Soil Moisture: Medium to Dry USDA Zone: 3a-9b Seeds Per Oz: 4,500 Produces large, rough leaves and 4-5" yellow flowers with dark centers.