You may have sown the seeds, but it’s not quite time to sit back and relax. Here are our top tips for getting your plant from seed to flower.
Young sunflowers make a tasty meal for slugs, snails and even pets such as rabbits. If you find a seedling is being nibbled, cut a clear plastic drinks bottle in half and cover the plant to make a protective ‘tent’. Remember to remove once the plant gets too big. You can also get slug pellets to ward off the slugs. We came across some non-toxic granules in Manchester at Hulme Garden Centre. Other tips included putting out crushed egg shells, garlic and stale beer.
Sunflowers need lots of water, so make sure they get a good drink daily when the weather is dry.
Once in flower, feed sunflowers weekly with liquid fertilizer (follow the instructions on the packet; never pour direct onto the plant). If you're worried about the fertiliser and children - avoid use.
As the seed head starts to develop, your plant might bend or even get blown over on a windy day. Tie plants to a fence, post or stake if they need extra support, but be careful not to tie too tightly – you don’t want the string to cut into the plant.
Got some tips and advice for other growers? Why not share your tips on twitter and facebook?!
We'll be launching some sunflower growing competitions soon - so keep them growing!
© 2017 MOSI and Manchester Science Festival
We had an overwhelming response to the 2012 call to grow sunflowers with nearly 12,000 pledged!
Read our tips on seeds and how to get planting
Discover, share and win prizes for the best learning resources
Read the Sunflower Diaries from 2012's bloom custodians
Pledges from all around the globe on our growers map
Take a look at our lovely blooms in the growers' gallery
Read all about the growers stories in our blog
Get some top tips from the experts on how to care for your sunflowers whilst they’re growing
Read our tips and share yours...
Turing's Sunflower growers' pictures make on display as part of Edinburgh Science Festival's Patterns of Nature exhibition.
See and share your growing photos...
Share your tips on Twitter...
See our interactive map of Turing Sunflower growers around the world...
Do your sunflowers match up with Turing's theories?
Learn how to count the spirals on your sunflowers with our easy guides and videos
Log your sunflowers ready for collection, counting and photographing
Find a counting and collection drop-in event near you
Delve into our interactive harvest map
Register it here and get the local community round for a count-off
We’ll be analysing your data from September 2012 with the full results being announced as part of Manchester Science Festival 2012 in October.
Hopefully your sunflowers are all grown up and ready to harvest, so check out our guides to when and how to count, and start sending us your data!
Read the background story to the Turing’s Sunflowers project and explre the strange links between maths and nature...
Growing tips, Meet thegrowers
See all our blog posts...
Posted 18 May 2016 in Around the world, Counting, Weird & Wonderful
Posted 18 Mar 2013 in Around the world, Weird & Wonderful
Posted 26 Feb 2013 in Around the world, events, Meet the growers
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Find out why we are celebrating the life of Alan Turing, who’s behind the project and why sunflowers are so important.
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