This is a journal of my vegetable gardens. Skippy was my first dog and he thought the garden was his, even though I did all the work. Now Suzie and Charley follow in his footsteps. We're located near Boston (USDA zone 6A). I have a community plot, a backyard vegetable garden, fruit trees, berry bushes, chickens, and bees. I use sustainable organic methods and do my best to grow all of my family's vegetables myself.

Tuesday, September 02, 2008

sunflower seeds

close up of sunflower head
sunflower seeds in a bowl shelled seed
sunflower seeds in my hand

I picked the giant sunflower head from my community plot yesterday. The birds had started helping themselves to the seeds. The head measured 15 inches across! Enourmous!

To make salted roasted seeds, I followed the recipe here. Clean 1 cup of seeds, boil 1 hour in salt water, the oven roast at 325 F for 45 minutes.

The seeds were yummy. Great big striped shells. We were surprised, though, at how many were empty. Out of 30 seeds I counted, only 13 had a kernel inside.

The rest of the sunflower head is out for the birds now. I'm keeping an eye on it to see if I can get a photo of a chickadee on it.

skip and sunflower head

By the way, the sunflower world records are here. The largest head was 32 ¼ in. (82 cm) diameter grown by Emily Martin in Maple Ridge, British Columbia, Canada in 1983. Holy cow! That's a big one!



Blogger Ali H said...

Whoa, that's enormous! I didn't even realize sunflowers could get that big. Well done!

September 02, 2008 11:41 AM

Blogger Jennifer said...

That's awesome! How tall was the plant?

September 02, 2008 4:08 PM

Blogger kathy said...

My sunflower plant was about 10 feet tall, I think. But the head was too heavy for the stem to stay up straight. The head was totally bent around so the plant was about 6 feet tall. The stem is probably 3 1/2 inches thick.

September 02, 2008 7:59 PM

Blogger Parsec said...

That first picture is just AWESOME! Wow...great post. It looks like you had great success with these sunflowers.

September 02, 2008 9:48 PM

Blogger Dan said...

Wow, I thought a 15 inch one was big but a 32.5 inch one is just enormous. A chickadee on a sunflower would be a very nice photo, they are so photogenic.

I have posted the veggie garden I saw in Niagara falls, here is the link

September 02, 2008 11:23 PM

Blogger earlysnowdrop said...

You have inspired me to harvest the sunflower seeds.

Just a point of interest on the Great Sunflower Project I am a part of, the researchers are asking for us to send the spent heads (they are much, much smaller) of the sunflowers which we have grown for this project. They want to do just what you did...analyze how many seeds were fertilized. This is just another indication of the presence of bees in the garden.

September 03, 2008 10:48 AM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Now thats a big sunflower head. Im just getting started, one day -hopefully- mine will be that big.
BTW - love what you've done with your garden.

September 03, 2009 9:14 PM


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