Tuesday, March 09, 2021




 A very inexpensive way to add some "vertical" to your gardens at the same time you are adding color is to plant sunflowers.  A package of  4-10  different seed varieties will cost $5-$12 total and the result will be impressive. At the flower farm, I usually buy ten different packages and plant one seed of each variety together in a hole 3" deep. Germination is always better than 90% unless you have a squirrel or chipmunk watching you plant. By the middle to end of July here in Zone 3-4 Vermont, the sunflowers are beginning to show some color which lasts until a hard frost---or a flock of hungry birds looking for fresh seeds.

As I purchase seeds I always try to vary the size of the flower heads I expect to see. That way I have some 8-9 foot tall attention-getters from way across the field as well as plenty of 5" diameter blooms on single stems that I can cut for bouquets. Do this once and you'll wonder why you didn't always include sunflower seeds on your list. Although the seed packages of sunflowers you might find in racks at box stores may seem incredibly inexpensive, sunflower seeds tend to be large and the husks protect them from dehydrating so the price is not only "right" but the varieties will get this project underway at little cost. 


Wolfhound said...

So you put 10 seeds in one hole and let them fight it out? ;) Just curious as I want to plant lots more this year than I've been able to in the past and if this is a good method I'll give it a try!

vermontflowerfarm@outlook.com said...

Yes, I do. Maybe an 8" hole, with good organic material mixed in 3 inches deep. Then I fill the hole back in, use a finger as a dibble, and push in holes 2" deep. Drop a different seed in every hole, firm up with a couple hand pats and then water. Seeds germinate quickly and once they are up 6" you see them reach for the sky. If you're out and about this summer, stop by our farm and see what varieties you might want to try next year. Always easy, always fun.