Sunflower – Moonshine
large pale yellow flowers with black centers
Pale yellow flowers with black centers on well-branching plants. 60″ tall.
Direct-sow after all danger of frost has passed. Sow seeds 1/2″ deep, about 6″ apart for tall sunflowers and 6-9″ apart for dwarf sunflowers. Kept at 70-75°F, germination is in 7-14 days. You can start sunflower seeds indoors in 2″ pots, but be sure to transplant into the garden well before seedlings become root-bound as sunflowers dislike root disturbance.
Sunflowers need at least 6-8 hours of direct sunlight and require light, well-drained soil. Excessive nitrogen can cause plants to grow too vigorously with abnormal flower shapes. Tall varieties may require support. Bamboo stakes are a good choice for any plant that has a strong, single stem and needs support for a short period of time. If planted in rich soil, sunflowers likely won’t need fertilizing. If you have poor soil, you can work a very small amount into the soil in springtime, prior to planting. A slow-release 10-15-10 can be used, but be careful not to mix in too much. When in doubt on how much to use, go with half of the recommended amount on the fertilizer directions. Pinching back sunflowers is not encouraged, especially with varieties that are single-stems.
Tall (taller than 36")
Attracts Pollinators, Use for Cut Flowers
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