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Who’s living in my sunflowers?

I have come to the conclusion that my favourite flower ever is the Sunflower. I am so enjoying the tall, sunny, friendly giants in my summer garden because they are more than just a Sunflower. They give shade with their big elephant ear -like leaves like an umbrella placed under a hot, unforgiving sun. Their huge colourful flowers bring such pleasure, but when the flower is spent, it droops and hangs and invites you to pick it to gather the abundant sunflower seeds that will bring new life for the coming summer. The seeds are health giving food for us and our animals and when you plant them the sprouts are the best ever to eat!

But the best of all are the little creatures that also find the Sunflower a respite from the summer heat – so, who is living in my sunflowers??

[one_half]A wasp in my sunflower[/one_half]

[one_half_last]Ladybugs tucked into the arm of the sunflower[/one_half_last]

[one_half]Yikes! A garden spider in camo gear, see it?[/one_half]

[one_half_last]Lots of ladybugs in the sunflowers[/one_half_last]

[one_half]A bee in the sunflower[/one_half]

[one_half_last]Is this a ladybug on the sunflower leaf?[/one_half_last]

SunflowerHelianthus annuus – The valuable edible oil has more Vitamin E than any other vegetable oil, the flowers yield a yellow dye, and the seeds are eaten dried or roasted.  No part of the plant is wasted as the stems are good for fuel when dry and the stems and leaves can be given to domestic animals as tasty fodder.

Bring a Sunflower into your garden and enjoy it!! xxx

Happy gardening



By Barbara

Country living is the best! Being a true spirit of the earth, my garden is all about vegetables and fruit trees and herbs and chickens roaming free. I was keen to really start gardening when we moved to Philadelphia in 2005, but not your typical suburban-type garden – sterile and bug-free! I wanted an edible garden.

15 replies on “Who’s living in my sunflowers?”

I just wanted you and Christine to know that Donna at GWGT, Donna at GEV, and I are all going to the Asheville Fling for garden bloggers in May. I think Christine mentioned a trip to the States for the two of you so why don’t you come? Make the hotel reservation today while you decide because rooms are almost gone—you can always cancel it. Hoping you can swing this, Carolyn

Wow, there’s a whole world in your sunflower patch and the blooms are increadible.

I love the little guys, too, but I can’t seem to protect mine from the squirrels. They climb the stalks and bend them to the ground. Then they strip them clean. I only wish I had half the energy they do.

They are so pretty! I have never grown sunflowers before, but I’m thinking I should give it a try this year. My husband loves sunflower seeds – he would be so thrilled to have them come out of the garden!

I literally just took the seed (the one with the shell on) and stuck them in the ground and they started to grow. No mess no fuss! Just add water! 🙂

I agree with you, they are fabulous flowers to have in the garden. Here we actually leave the sunflower stems to stand until spring. We have native bees that nest inside the stems, and overwinter there, emerging in the spring. It looks a little shabby during the winter months, but I don’t mind, as I’d rather see more bees on my sunflowers next year!

Beautiful, and so cheerful! Oh, to have a deer-free yard! I may have to plant some of these in the fenced veggie beds this year…

One thing I’ve noticed with sunflowers before is that the birds start pecking at them way too early, even before there are any seeds for them to get. I’m surprised you don’t have any birds on them in these photos. Maybe soon.

They are my best flower ever 🙂 I guess that because it is my first batch of sunflowers the birds aren’t “trained” to go for the seeds. Let’s see what happens, I’ll keep you posted!

Hi Dani – I am collecting all the seeds so I will be more than happy to send you some. When I make sunflower sprouts, I use the seeds you buy for the shop (Pick n Pay) – the ones with no shell. They grow quickly and you must eat them before the first actual leaves sprout, otherwise it gets bitter.

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