Sunflower Choices

Tall, single-stem varieties bear single large (12 inch) flowers on stalks 8 to 15 feet tall. These traditional types also produce the most seeds—about 900 seeds to a head:
‘Mammoth Russian,’
‘Giant Gray Stripe’

Mid-sized branching varieties are all about 5 to 8 feet tall and bear multicolored blooms:
‘Italian White’
‘Valentine’; about 4 to 6 feet tall.
‘Teddy Bear’; double-flowered and about 3 feet tall.
‘Sungold’ (Sol d’Oro); double flowered and about 3 feet tall.

Dwarf varieties bear good-sized flowers—they are only 1 to 2 feet tall.
‘Big Smile’ is the very smallest at 12 inches tall with 3 inch flowers.
‘Pacino’ is a branching mini at 1 ½ feet tall potted; long bloom period.
‘Elf’ is only 16 inches tall, branching with 4 inch wide flowers.
‘Sundance Kid’ is 18 inches, branching, double flowered, early blooming.
Pollenless hybrids are ideal for cut flowers. They do not shed pollen when brought into the house. They grow 3 to 6 feet tall:
‘Sunrich Lemon’
‘Sunrich Orange’

Other annual sunflowers:
Silverleaf Sunflower (Helianthus argophyllus) features silvery foliage.
Cucumberleaf Sunflower (Helianthus debilis) has 3 inch wide flowers.
Prairie Sunflower (Helianthus petiolaris) is a western native with triangular leaves, yellow petals surrounding brown or purple centers.

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