Sunflowers are extremely easy to grow and children love competing to see who can grow the tallest! Last night’s Big Allotment Challenge participants enjoyed using them in a topiary tree arrangement.
Here are our top tips on how to grow them:
- This month (May) you can sow them straight into the ground – choose a sunny site with well drained soil. Sow at 1cm deep and 10cm apart and cover with soil. Water well
- You can sow into pots if you want to give them extra tlc – they can then be transplanted once the seedlings have established in the pot
- Watch out for slugs and snails eating the seedlings – cover with a clear bottle or cloche to keep away or use slug pellets
- As the sunflower grows it may need some support – tie to a cane as it gets taller
- After the sunflowers have flowered don’t be tempted to chop them down, the seed heads will attract birds. You can leave them where they are or hang the seed heads from your bird table
Look out for the giant varieties like ‘Russian Giant’, the double ‘Teddy Bear’ and a whole host of different colours including pale yellow, white, red and orange.