Helianthus annuus | Common Sunflower ‘Mongolian Giant’
The sunflower genus includes around 70 species, of which Helianthus annuus (Common Sunflower) is the most commonly seen in the average garden.
The Mongolian sunflower, as the name suggests, is a giant, annual sunflower variety from Mongolia, with an extra thick stem and giant alternating leaves that are wider at the base than at the top. Each plant has an enormous yellow flower head that can reach 18+ inches in diameter on plants that grow up to 12-14 ft tall! The flower heads are the largest and fattest we’ve ever seen and appear like an over-sized shower head once mature.
Mongolian Giant sunflower seeds are one of the largest, if not the largest seeds of any sunflower variety available. At 1 inch long, these are nearly double the size of most others. And they’re highly nutritious, too, making a perfect snack, or for feeding to birds!
Sunflowers have one of the most aggressive root systems known, capable of drilling down through hard-pan or clay. They work great to pulverize a hard spot in the raised beds or flower bed, making it perfect for next season. Will tolerate drought and poor soil, but performs much better with soil amendments and extra water.
All kinds of birds, bees, beetles, butterflies, and a myriad of other pollinators are attracted to sunflowers. They may be used as a trap crop, attracting sucking insects like the stink bug and leaf-footed bug away from other edible garden crops, like tomatoes and peppers. Once the seeds are mature (or even before), finches, jays, and other birds will start snacking on them. so you will need to harvest the flower heads before they do!
Easy to grow. Heavy seed yields- we’ve counted over 1400 seeds per head! This is one of the most noticeably unique giant sunflowers out there, which makes it one of our favorites.
Sun exposure: Full sun
Mature height: 12-14 ft
Mature width: 3 ft
Hardiness zones: All (annual)