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Growing Sunflower

Jan F M A M J J A S O N Dec
        P P            

(Best months for growing Sunflower in USA - Zone 5a regions)

P = Sow seed

  • Sow in garden. Sow seed at a depth approximately three times the diameter of the seed. Best planted at soil temperatures between 50°F and 86°F. (Show °C/cm)
  • Space plants: 8 - 12 inches apart
  • Harvest in 10-11 weeks.
  • Compatible with (can grow beside): Cucumbers, Melons, Sweetcorn, Squash
  • Avoid growing close to: Potatoes
  • Young plants
    Young plants

Large showy flowers, available in a variety of colours Giant or Russian varieties are best for seed production

Sunflowers do not like to be transplanted.

Grow to 1 - 2 metres (4 - 6 ft) so need staking or protection from the wind. Protect the seed heads from birds when ripening.

Culinary hints - cooking and eating Sunflower

Use seeds fresh or toasted

Your comments and tips

02 Oct 17, Jan Brand (South Africa - Summer rainfall climate)
What fertiliser is best for growing sunflowers? Do they also need more potasium? Please help!
24 Sep 17, Jaylin Driver (New Zealand - temperate climate)
How long do sunflowers take to germinate?
24 Sep 17, Philip Rathbone (South Africa - Summer rainfall climate)
Hi. Im getting Married in December and my Fiance wants bunches of Sunflowers for the day. I live in Germiston. Where can I buy Sunflowers
13 Sep 17, Gary Barr (USA - Zone 12b climate)
I live in an area with typically 150 - 200 inches of rain (although not this year) and a temperature range of 55 - 85 - but mostly 60-75 degrees. Soil tends to be on the acidic side (volcanic soils) I'm interested in knowing if there are varieties of sunflowers that will grow in these conditions and also are good for honey production. Thanks
31 Jul 17, Jen (South Africa - Summer rainfall climate)
Hi am I interested in growing sunflowers. I live in Johannesburg, South Africa. It is currently winter but warming up very quickly with Spring coming in September, When is the best time to plant seeds>
05 Jun 17, Rejoice (South Africa - Semi-arid climate)
Hi,my I stay in Limpopo province and would like to know what is the best months to cultivate sunflower. I'm passionate about planting sunflower please help
09 Jun 17, John (Australia - temperate climate)
Plant sunflower seeds after all frosts are over, if you get them. Sunflowers are fairly tough but will respond to well worked soil with manure or compost added. They will also do better if they get water. Mulch will help save water.
20 Apr 17, Debbie (South Africa - Semi-arid climate)
Want to grow sunflowers. I am in Malmesbury in the western cape. When is the best time to grow them. I have awefull clay soil so that i need to sort 1st.
21 Apr 17, John (Australia - temperate climate)
Looking at the climate for Malmesbury in Western Cape you seem to have fairly mild winters. wait until after any frosts are over then plant your seed. If you have heavy clay soil try and break it up a bit by adding gypsum. I would try and work in about 2kg per square metre. You could also plant field peas or lupins to help break up the soil. These can be forked in when they are flowering. If your soil is really degraded this should help. Alternatively plant some of the shorter varieties that only grow from knee to waist high. Sunflowers are quite tough and respond well to good watering. Trust this helps.
02 Mar 17, Bella (New Zealand - temperate climate)
Hi Yesterday I scraped out a handful of sunflower seeds from a plant in a friends garden. I have them in a brown paper bag. Can I plant them today or do I need dry them out before I plant them. Thanks
Showing 1 - 10 of 78 comments

I live in an area with typically 150 - 200 inches of rain (although not this year) and a temperature range of 55 - 85 - but mostly 60-75 degrees. Soil tends to be on the acidic side (volcanic soils) I'm interested in knowing if there are varieties of sunflowers that will grow in these conditions and also are good for honey production. Thanks

- Gary Barr

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This planting guide is a general reference intended for home gardeners. We recommend that you take into account your local conditions in making planting decisions. Gardenate is not a farming or commercial advisory service. For specific advice, please contact your local plant suppliers, gardening groups, or agricultural department. The information on this site is presented in good faith, but we take no responsibility as to the accuracy of the information provided.
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