Grow these two royally gorgeous sunflowers for their beauty in the garden, for loads of cut flowers, and to provide support for local bees. 'Lemon Queen' is a well-known pollinator-friendly variety, and 'Velvet Queen' also provides plenty of pollen; both are drought tolerant, too. This combination of 4"–8" wide, lemon yellow and dark burgundy sunflowers looks stunning as a backdrop for the flower or vegetable garden and the multi-branching stems bloom for months. Sunflowers are edible, with a bittersweet flavor. The petals add a pretty pop of color ion salads and desserts. The young, sunflower buds are edible, with a flavor similar to artichoke hearts. They can be grilled, marinated, or sauteed for an unusual appetizer or side dish.
Botanical Name: Helianthus annuus
Native: North America
Plant Dimensions: 5'–8' tall
Variety Information: 'Lemon Queen' has 5"–7" blooms with lemon-yellow petals and a brown center; 'Velvet Queen' has 4"-8" flowers with dark burgundy petals and a black center.
Exposure: Full sun
Bloom Period: Summer to frost
Attributes: Attracts Pollinators, Cut Flower, Drought Tolerant, Heat Tolerant
When to Sow Outside: RECOMMENDED. 1 to 2 weeks after your average last frost date.
When to Start Inside: 2 to 4 weeks before your average last frost date. Sunflowers are sensitive to root disturbance; sow in biodegradable pots that can be planted directly in the ground.
Days to Emerge: 10–15 days
Seed Depth: ¼"–½"
Seed Spacing: A group of 3 seeds every 18"–24"
Thinning: When 3" tall, thin to 1 every 18"–24"
This mix covers approximately 440 sq. ft.