support for sunflowers

gardener_maid(5a MI)April 6, 2004

I am planting many varities of sunflowers this year and would like some suggestions....so when they get too tall, I won't have a problem. Or, maybe it won't be a problem, since I have never grown them before, not sure what to expect. Thanks for any advice.

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aka_peggy(Central Md 6b)

I live in a very windy area and grow lots of sunflowers. My neighbor never grew sunflowers before I moved here 4 yrs ago because she was afraid they would blow over in the wind.

Well, last yr for the 1st time I lost one sunflower that blew over. Odd, because I've seen it much windier and never lost one before. I do sometimes have trouble with the taller annuals and perennials like cleome and zinnia's because the wind blows them over.

But generally it's not necessary to stake sunflowers. They'll develop a tree like trunk and can take a lot of abuse. And they're so much fun to grow and the birds love them.

So enjoy your sunflowers~

    Bookmark   April 6, 2004 at 9:59AM
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meldy_nva(z6b VA)

They are very self-supporting, even the bushy types. We had a hurricane last year which managed to knock over most of my DH's sunflowers. The short ones pretty much straightened themselves back upright; after the rains were over, DH went out and pulled the tall ones up and tamped their roots back in place. They all did fine. If you grow the ones that make really big heads of seed (like russian mammoth) you might want to plant them near a fence or tie them to stakes to help support the heavy heads, but it usually isn't necessary (unless you have a lot of windstorms or hurricanes).

    Bookmark   April 6, 2004 at 2:30PM
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aka_peggy(Central Md 6b)

Meldy,

I grow "mammoth" and have never lost a one.
I live in a wind tunnel, or a gap on the border of Va, WV and Md. The wind can make it a challenge at times.

    Bookmark   April 7, 2004 at 8:47AM
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bulbs(z6 PA)

Last year for 1st time I grew sunflowers - they got to about 7 feet tall (supposed to be 5-6!). No support needed, and the hurricane damage would have been same even with support. And I'm planning to grow some this year as well!

    Bookmark   April 26, 2004 at 11:22AM
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amy_z6_swpa

I too have grown a few types of the 4-5 foot tall sunflowers and their stems are so strong they never needed support. Only the flower heads drooped/nodded when they got full of mature seed. It's amazing how woody and tough the stems get after the plants are done too. I couldn't even budge the stumps out of the ground until we had a great rain. They felt harder than wood.

    Bookmark   April 27, 2004 at 1:44PM
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lwhita

I found this on a website and thought it looked rather neat!! I was thinking about trying it out myself!

Laurie

Here is a link that might be useful: Sunflower Frame

    Bookmark   April 28, 2004 at 2:59PM
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susanmc5

Hubby made that Sunflower Frame for me last year. It did support the sunflowers well, but during any wind the smaller branches actually broke from being blown back and forth against the boards. This year I am not going to use it and see how it goes. It looked nice but was more trouble than it was worth. SusanM

    Bookmark   May 7, 2004 at 5:45PM
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Gwyn(6A, Mississauga)

Last year I had the 6-7 ft variety planted near a chain link fence and just used twist ties to secure them to the fence. This year the wabbits, squirrels will not let them grow past 3 inches.

    Bookmark   June 22, 2004 at 1:04PM
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