kids grow sunflowers
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kids grow sunflowers

Growing sunflowers with kids

Sunflowers are huge, cheerful, fast-growing flowers that last all summer! What's more, you can eat the seeds - just sprinkle them over cereal, salad or eat them on their own as a delicious, healthy snack. Birds love eating them too.

What you'll need:

  • • Packet of sunflower seeds
  • • Containers and multi-purpose compost (if using)
  • • Garden canes and string
  • • Watering can

Step 1: Prepare the ground

sunflower facing the sunSunflowers like a sunny spot
Image: K-Smile love/ Shutterstock
  • • Choose a sunny spot. Sunflowers like to grow in full sun.
  • • If sowing in the ground, remove any weeds.
  • • Rake the soil to a fine, crumbly texture.
  • • Sunflowers grow best in the ground - but you can also grow small ones in pots. If you're using them, fill with compost.

Step 2: Sow your seeds

cross section of a sunflower growingPlant your seeds about 1.5cm deep.
Image: Bogdan W./ Shutterstock
  • • Choose a packet of sunflower seeds - remember to check how tall they'll grow!
  • • Make some holes 1.5cm deep. Leave a 10cm space between each seed.
  • • Carefully drop the seeds in and cover with soil.
  • • Water the seeds gently.
  • • If growing in pots, use one seed per pot.

Step 3: Care for your sunflowers

child holding a sunflower to her faceSunflowers can grow as big as your face!
Image: irin-k/ Shutterstock
  • • Slugs and snails like to eat the new shoots! Protect them by placing half of a plastic bottle over your seedlings.
  • • Water your plants regularly.
  • • Thin your plants out as they grow, to about 45cm apart.
  • • Feed your sunflowers with tomato feed just before they flower!
  • • Once your sunflowers grow taller than you, support the stem with a cane and tie it on loosely with string.
  • • After flowering, leave the faded heads so the birds can eat the seeds - and harvest some for next year's crop!

Popular sunflower varieties

There's plenty more information in the downloadable guide. Print it out for more detailed instructions and even more sunflowers facts!

  Click the image to download the full pdf guide  
growing sunflowers with kids pdf

Banner image: salajean/ Shutterstock

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