Avg seeds/pkt 80
It’s easy to see why sunflowers are one of the few North American natives still in cultivation. Beloved by the birds and the bees, black oil sunflowers make an impressive showing with 10- to 12-inch flowers atop 5-foot stems.
When soil has warmed to 60°F or higher, sow directly in deep, fertile, well-drained soil that receives at least 6 hours of sun daily. Add compost and a balanced granular fertilizer if needed. Plant clusters of 3 seeds 1/2 inch deep and 12- to 24-inches apart. Keep moist. Plants emerge in 10 to 18 days. Indoor sowing is not recommended.
Sunflowers are anchored by long taproots and can withstand mild drought, but do best with a thorough soaking at soil level once a week. Feed every two weeks with a granular fertilizer, like 4-4-4, worked into the soil a foot away from the stem.
Do not skimp on nitrogen—these plants need large leaves to produce flowers and seed.
After 90 days, when the backs of the flowers are yellow, cut the seedheads, along with 12 inches of stem, and dry in a warm, ventilated spot. Check weekly. When completely dry, store seeds or flowers in secure containers.
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