Best sunflowers for cutting?

oath5(z6b/7a MD)January 8, 2011

I'm 21, and have been attempting to sell cut flowers and vegetables for a little extra income during the summer from our 50 x 50 ft garden. We tried LOTS of varieties of sunflowers last year and was really disappointing with them and how fragile and quick to sulk most are. The small heirloom Bianca was so disappointing.

We DID grow Double Sun Gold which looks like Teddy Bear I think, cept it's tall and has GREAT stems and gave second flowers generally after cutting the main big flower. They sold out very quickly, so I'll be growing more of those for sure.

Any suggestions on what should be a staple for my business? I like heirlooms a lot...but good modern hybrids are okay, as long as it's not frankenflower.

Thanks!

- Max

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wildearth

hey max,

i grew "the joker" last year and even tho my soil was not well prepared, it did fine. i was able to get lots of cuts from each stalk. it's an f1 hybrid. i also tried soroya and peach passion but neither did as well. but as i mentioned, they were all planted in a poor spot.

cheers!

bill

    Bookmark   January 8, 2011 at 7:30AM
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thinman(Z5 MI)

For cut flowers it's probably best to use the pollen-less hybrids. My customers generally report a vase life of at least a week and usually more.

I've tried quite a few and the two that I've stuck with are the ProCuts and Sunrich series. These are both single-stemmed varieties.

Good luck to you.

ThinMan

    Bookmark   January 8, 2011 at 4:01PM
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tommyk

I've tried many varities of sunflowers, most did OK, but my favorite now is Golden Cheer . . . a fantastic double flower on long stems. And they are prolific.

They hold up better than many of the "petal" types that are fragile with petals falling off.

I get $2 a stem at my Farmers' Market.

    Bookmark   January 10, 2011 at 2:31PM
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annebert(6b/7a MD)

I agree that "florists" sunflowers like the ProCut series are excellent. Also make sure that you cut them before they have fully opened - easier transport and they last longer.

    Bookmark   January 22, 2011 at 6:34PM
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tommyk

As anyone grown the "Amit" sunflower? I'm looking for another double sunflower to compliment Golden Cheer.

    Bookmark   January 27, 2011 at 1:34PM
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marthacr(z5 Me)

I'm surprised that you like the single stem sunflowers. Do you plant them really close together in order to get plenty of cuts? I usually choose flowers based on how many cuts I can get from one plant.

Martha

    Bookmark   January 28, 2011 at 9:41AM
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tommyk

Unless one has lots of land to devote to single stem sunflowers growing the branching types are probably better for small plots.

Another thing to remember about single-stem sunflowers are they tend to mature at the same time . . . which is fine if you can sell them at the same time. But for small-time growers the branching types may be the best choice, because you'll get production for a longer time as opposed to a one-time cutting with single stems.

    Bookmark   January 28, 2011 at 11:06AM
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les_neli

I, and my customers, love the sunrich sunflowers. I have space to plant single stem varieties and I plant them weekly for a weekly harvest.

I don't have a branching one I love yet. Every year I try out some more but I just haven't found one that gives me long, strong stems and that last as long as the single stem sunrich. I do grow Claret, Moulin Rouge, and Soraya regularly. I have been getting good stems on the Soraya but they do shed pollen and most of my customers prefer a pollen-less variety.

    Bookmark   January 28, 2011 at 9:25PM
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