Easy To Grow & Care for Sunflower Plants

Sunflower is a plant known and popular to all of us which is one of the oil crops. You can easily add it to your garden. The common sunflower (Helianthus annuus) is an annual plant with rough succulent, hairy stems that can reach a height of 1 to 4.5 m (3 to 15 ft), rough leaves that can be 7.5 to 25 cm long. Sunflowers have been cultivated for centuries in many countries around the world, including North and Central America. There are currently more than 70 species of sunflowers around the world. It not only provides an aesthetic beauty but also provides valuable food for birds and wildlife.

From today’s article you will get complete information about sunflower plant care. The scientific name of sunflower is Helianthus annuus, it belongs to the Asteraceae family. Sunflower plants are generally cultivated in all soils. But loamy soil is most suitable. This article will guide you from choosing the right place for sunflowers to watering and fertilizing.

Easy To Grow & Care for Sunflower Plants

Types of Sunflowers

There are several types of sunflowers, each with its own unique characteristics. Some common types include:
  • Dwarf Sunflowers
  • Giant Sunflowers
  • Multicolored Sunflowers
  • Pollenless Sunflowers

Right Location and Preparing the Soil:

The first step in sunflower plant care is choosing the right location. Sunflowers prefer full sunlight, so you should choose a spot in your garden that receives direct sunlight. Requires 6 to 8 hours of direct sunlight daily. Sunflowers prefer fertile loamy and well-drained soil, so make sure the soil is loose and well-aerated. It does not grow well in moist or wet soil.

Sunflowers prefer well-drained soil with a pH of 6.0 to 7.5 that is rich in organic matter. Before planting sunflowers, amend the soil with compost or well-rotted manure to improve soil fertility and structure. To ensure proper moisture, the soil should be prepared with cocopeat and organic fertilizers along with loamy soil.

Planting Sunflowers:

Once you find the right location, it’s time to plant your sunflowers. You can plant sunflowers directly into the ground, or you can start them indoors and transplant them later. If you are planting directly into the ground, be sure to wait until after the last frost or a hard winter. Sunflowers can be started indoors about four weeks before the last frost.

Temperature for Sunflower:

Sunflower grows best in a temperature range of 18 to 25 °C, although controlled environment experiments indicate that 18 to 25 °C is optimal. Sowing temperatures should not be too high, and mild temperatures during sowing are ideal. However, temperatures below freezing should be avoided as this can damage or kill the plant. Fertilizer application is essential for healthy plant growth as sunflowers like a lot of fertilizer.

Water Application:

Sunflowers need plenty of water during the first few weeks of planting. Water your sunflowers deeply once a week, making sure to soak the soil about six inches deep. Once your sunflowers are established, you should reduce watering, but make sure to water deeply when you do.

However, keep in mind that for tubs, the soil should be slightly wet when growing sunflowers. Sunflower cultivation is not very good in too wet soil. Care should be taken so that water does not accumulate at the base of the tree and additional fertilizer should be applied to the base of the tree after one month. A small amount of fertilizer should be applied after 1 month of planting. With proper care, your garden will be full of sunflowers. So don’t wait any longer and cultivate sunflowers on the roof of your house.

Fertilizer Requirements:

Sunflowers need a heavy fertilizer, but only four weeks after planting. Apply NPK fertilizer once every 10 days or two weeks. After fertilizing, water the plant to dissolve the fertilizer. Give the plant a balanced fertilizer once a month. Alternatively, you can use organic fertilizers such as compost or manure.

Sunflower Staking:

If the sunflowers are quite tall you will need to protect them from being torn or broken. You can use bamboo poles or something else to keep your sunflower upright. Be sure to stake your sunflowers before they get too tall, or the plant’s roots may be damaged.

Dealing with pests and diseases:

Sunflowers are relatively resistant to insects and diseases, but sunflowers can still be affected by a few common problems. One of the most common pests is the sunflower beetle, which can be controlled with insecticides or by hand picking. Sunflowers can suffer from fungal diseases such as rust, which causes leaf wilting, stem or leaf lesions. Prevention can be done by using fungicides if necessary.

Grow Sunflowers from Seed:

Plants can be grown from seed by following a few simple steps:

a) Sow sunflower seeds in soil one inch deep and six inches apart. Planting should be done when the seedlings are six inches tall.
b) Take a medium sized tub with drainage holes.
c) Always keep the soil moist for the first 10-12 days and keep it in low light.
d) True leaves start developing in 15 to 20 days.
e) Early flower bud stages are important where you need to take good care of the plant.
f) After sowing, in about 60 to 65 days, you will see buds start to develop and then flowers in about 70 days.

FAQ [Frequently Asked Questions]

What is the best time to plant sunflowers?

The best time to plant sunflowers is late spring or early summer when soil temperatures reach 18 to 25 degrees Celsius and there is no longer any risk of frost.

Do sunflowers need maintenance?

Sunflower plants do not require much care as they are drought and heat tolerant and pest resistant. For good root growth you can apply liquid fertilizer at planting time and then once a month during the growing season.

How much water do sunflowers need?

Sunflowers need to be watered regularly, especially in their early growth stages. They need at least an inch of water per week and prefer moist, well-drained soil. It is important not to overwater sunflowers as this can cause root rot.

When is the best time to harvest sunflowers?

The best time to harvest sunflowers is when the back of the flower turns yellow and the seeds are plump and dark black in color. To harvest, cut off the flower head with a sharp knife or scissors and leave the flowers to dry for a few weeks.

What month do sunflowers bloom?

New plants should be sown in late spring to early summer when the cold weather subsides. Flowers are in full bloom from June to early July, and others end in late October.

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