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Author Topic: sunflowers question  (Read 3443 times)

northfifeduckling

  • Joined Jan 2009
  • Fife
    • North Fife Blog
sunflowers question
« on: September 19, 2011, 02:46:18 pm »
How long do I keep the heads on if I want to collect some seed to grow next year? Last year the wild birds had them all (which they were welcome to but I want some this year  ;D)...How can I tell if they are ready? :&>

Rosemary

  • Joined Oct 2007
  • Barry, Angus, Scotland
    • The Accidental Smallholder
Re: sunflowers question
« Reply #1 on: September 19, 2011, 05:47:18 pm »
Don't know but I'm watching this with interest as we grew sunflowers this year for the hens. The petals have fallen off many of the flowers but I don't know what to do next. They have been lovely and very popular with bees and hoverflies.

little blue

  • Joined Jun 2009
  • Derbyshire
Re: sunflowers question
« Reply #2 on: September 19, 2011, 07:44:50 pm »
you should see them start to open up around the black seeds when they are ready to drop.
Or watch carefully for the wild birds to visit!
Little Blue

northfifeduckling

  • Joined Jan 2009
  • Fife
    • North Fife Blog
Re: sunflowers question
« Reply #3 on: September 21, 2011, 09:28:05 am »
do they ripen when you take the heads off and take them indoors? I had to stake them today as they had grown so big and heavy that they fell over! Not sure if the stakes will hold in the next storm brewing already... :&>

Fowgill Farm

  • Joined Feb 2009
Re: sunflowers question
« Reply #4 on: September 21, 2011, 12:24:18 pm »
Don''t know if this is the right thing but we snip the heads of and leave them to dry out and then shake the seeds out, pigs love 'em.
HTh
Mandy  :pig:

ellisr

  • Joined Sep 2009
  • Wales
Re: sunflowers question
« Reply #5 on: September 21, 2011, 03:02:15 pm »
Can you not do the same as veg seeds and pop a paper bag over the head and secure with string snip off and hang upside down in the shed.

In my head it makes sense but someone with knowledge of sunflowers may know different.

doganjo

  • Joined Aug 2012
  • Clackmannanshire
  • Qui? Moi?
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Re: sunflowers question
« Reply #6 on: September 21, 2011, 03:27:49 pm »
I did that last year and it worked.  Also I don't buy seeds any more I use the ones that come in a packet of mixed seeds for baking.  There's usually enough in that for my use.
Always have been, always will be, a WYSIWYG - black is black, white is white - no grey in my life! But I'm mellowing in my old age

ellied

  • Joined Sep 2010
  • Fife
    • Facebook
Re: sunflowers question
« Reply #7 on: September 23, 2011, 06:42:06 pm »
Ah, thanks for this, I was about to ask ;)  I have 2 huge heads both drooping badly with the wind, and petals going or gone, middles undulating as seeds grow presumably inside there somewhere, had some lovely bees on them for a week or so recently so had left them to it but don't know when to take action or what to do..

I'll leave them a bit longer and then find a paper bag if they collapse then ;)

Are they edible by us directly or will the lucky chooks get the lot?
Barleyfields Smallholding & Kirkcarrion Highland Ponies
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northfifeduckling

  • Joined Jan 2009
  • Fife
    • North Fife Blog
Re: sunflowers question
« Reply #8 on: September 24, 2011, 11:44:42 am »
of course you can eat them, if you don't mind cracking the shell. I still remember from my holidays as a child men endlessly spitting shells, I think it was in Turkey or Greece. It's mmore convient for us to eat the industrially shelled ones.... :&>

ellied

  • Joined Sep 2010
  • Fife
    • Facebook
Re: sunflowers question
« Reply #9 on: September 26, 2011, 08:55:34 am »
This is how far mine have developed - can just see seeds coming :)
Barleyfields Smallholding & Kirkcarrion Highland Ponies
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Plantoid

  • Joined May 2011
  • Yorkshireman on a hill in wet South Wales
Re: sunflowers question
« Reply #10 on: October 09, 2011, 08:41:27 pm »
Like has been said watch the birds , when they start eating the seeds are ripe.
 bung a head in an old pillowcase and bring it indoors , hang it up or hang it in a drying air place. till next year .
keep them frost free any moisture in the head will wreck it and it won't belong before you get mould on the seeds.

 If your interested  local farmers around here and  farmers on the continent have started growing a very short stemmed sunflower for oil  & animal feed as well as game cover .

If you can get some of that seed you may save yourself a few weeks of growing season. Even if it is a hybrid  it's still worth giving it a try .
International playboy & liar .
Man of the world not a country

northfifeduckling

  • Joined Jan 2009
  • Fife
    • North Fife Blog
Re: sunflowers question
« Reply #11 on: October 09, 2011, 08:50:23 pm »
I picked one out today to have a look and it appears empty in the hard shell  ??? maybe the bees weren't busy enough? :&>

 

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