Sunday, August 10, 2014

Sunday Sunlight...

In the form of a sunflower (Helianthus annuus).  Like a lot of other flowers, those showy petals around the center aren't really the flower; the real flowers are the tiny florets found in the center of the ray petals.  They're native to North America and weren't brought to Europe until the 16th century.  It's a myth that they follow the sun; only the immature buds do that.  I always loved it when I would look at a field of sunflowers which were facing all different directions.  Rebel sunflowers!  Non-conformist, free-thinking sunflowers! I finally looked it up and was a little disappointed when I found out that they weren't really rebels...

They do have a bit of a dark side, too.  Sunflowers release a toxin that suppresses the growth of plants near them.  Killer sunflowers, who knew?  Fortunately for that ladybug though, sunflowers love ladybugs...and bees, butterflies, birds, animals...everyone, I guess, except other plants who would steal their nutrients and ladies wearing large hats who approach them with scissors.  I distinctly heard one say to a friend, who was intending to cut some of its flowers, "Get away from me, horrible woman!"  No really, I did.  I think she heard it too, because she abruptly turned to me and said crossly, "Well, if you didn't want me to pick any sunflowers, you should have said so before!"  She still doesn't believe that it was the sunflower who said that, but thinks it was me, can you imagine?  My voice doesn't sound anything like the voices of sunflowers!


  1. Have you truly never seen sunflowers follow the sun?? I have........Ofcourse i cannot say all sunflowers...but MY sunflowers followed the sun......Hugs! deb

  2. Not this kind, Deb. This is the one that all hybrids come from and some of those do follow the sun. I should have said that in my post...

  3. Haha! Loved this! Isn't it funny that some people refuse to hear to what nature is saying to them?
    And there are those who are "tuned in", and can hear the very heartbeat of the earth itself. :)

    Beautiful sunflower... a ray of petalled sunshine.
    I love these beauties. And, I'd like to think of myself as a "non conformist, free thinking sunflower" :D

  4. I thought it was just me! I hear my plants whisper as I brush past them in the garden ... a particular redbud tree says the nicest things ;) I'm so glad that sunflower spoke up in time! What was that lady thinking?! No one cuts sunflowers do they? You have to wait for the seeds to ripen and then you have to leave them for the birds to enjoy. I thought everyone knew that. Enjoyed this post. Wendy x

  5. Dear Victoria - I have missed you...these sunflowers are awesome. I didn't know about their petals were not the real flower but the florets inside.
    Wonder if they are poisonous to all plants growing beneath them. Will have to watch and see.
    I don't cut mine - the chickadees and finches love those seeds and I love watching the chickadees turn themselves upside down trying to get each seed. They just make me smile. So does your post. Have a great day.

  6. Vicki, Wendy, and Debbie, I knew we were kindred spirits! It makes me happy that you all liked the post. :)


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