Dwarf sunflowers are miniature counterparts of the tall garden sunflower (Helianthus annuus) of the Asteraceae family, preferred for small height and spectacular blossoms. They appear in various colors, including yellow, orange, pink, and red, and the flowers are frequently multicolored.
These flowers can be single or double, and stem length and size vary, some of them make excellent cut flowers. In this post, we’ll lay out everything to know about Dwarf Sunflowers, from how to grow dwarf sunflowers and their care, continue reading to find out more.
JUMP TO TOPIC
- What Are Dwarf Sunflowers?
- Dwarf Sunflowers Care
- Water Requirements
- Light Requirements
- Soil Requirements
- Temperature Requirements
- Humidity Requirements
- Fertilization Requirements
- Pruning Requirements
- Frequently Asked Questions
What Are Dwarf Sunflowers?
Dwarf sunflowers are small variants of their larger counterparts. They may be small, but they produce beautiful vivid yellow blooms. The bloom heads are a few inches in diameter and reach a height of three feet. Nonetheless, they have the same appearance as regular sunflowers, with the exception of their height.
Dwarf Sunflowers Care
Sunflowers need a tiny bit of water, however, plants growing in containers will require more frequent watering as their water dries up a little quicker, but again the water needed is a tiny bit.
These tiny flowers can withstand drought, but they thrive in soil that is kept moist. It’s essential to keep the soil moisturized (but not soggy) during the first several weeks of growth. Sunflowers that bloom quickly need to be kept moist to flower correctly.
These plants require between six to eight hours of sun per day to thrive. After all, the word “sun” isn’t in their name by accident! When shorter time under the sunlight is spent, it will allow them to survive, but the plants will grow less vivid.
Light, nutrient-rich, and well-drained soil are ideal for sunflower plants. When planting in pots, make sure the bottom has drainage holes.
Additionally, their root systems are shorter and have more fibers than other varieties, indicating that they will not grow as far into the soil as different types.
During the day, growing at 70 to 80 degrees Fahrenheit (21 to 27 degrees Celsius), and at night, at 50 to 60degree Fahrenheit (10 to 16 degrees Celsius). Warmer temperatures can lead dwarf sunflowers to stretch, whereas cooler temperatures can cause them to shrink even more.
Sunflowers thrive in low-water environments and are typically drought tolerant. They can still withstand extreme humidity, but they need well-draining soil and excellent air circulation to avoid root rot and other diseases.
To preserve the plant, and keep it healthy and happy, use a slow-release, well-balanced fertilizer now and then. Add compost or other nutrients to the soil regularly. To keep them looking their best, pinch off yellow or brown leaves.
Sunflowers rarely ever require fertilization because flower blossoms are hampered by excess nitrogen.
To grow many stems with plenty of flowers, you need to prune dwarf sunflowers on a regular basis.
- After they’ve grown four to six inches tall, pull back dwarf sunflowers a little above the first or second leaf set. Pinch with your fingers, or use small clippers or scissors.
- Pinch back new growth when it has grown an additional two to four inches, just above a leaf set, around one or two inches. Continue doing this until your plant has bushy and between 12 and 18 inches tall. Stop pruning your dwarf sunflower so that it can produce a large number of blossoms.
- After the foliage dies back, trim dwarf sunflowers to the ground. They are hardy in USDA plant hardiness zones four to nine. This form of pruning can be done in the late fall or early winter, or you could just wait until the new growth starts in late winter or early spring.
Dwarf sunflowers can be propagated both through cuttings and through direct seeding. Read on to learn which method might be better suited for you, and see your sunflowers prosper and increase.
– Propagation By Stem
Softwood cuttings obtained before the current season’s growth has developed and hardened are the best way to reproduce dwarf sunflowers. Although the optimal time to collect softwood cuttings is in the spring, they can be gathered at any time of year with varying success.
Because flowers divert a plant’s energy away from roots, cuttings must be obtained before the plant blooms fully.
Dwarf sunflowers’ center stem rarely makes for a viable cutting, thus propagation material should be taken from the more strong and succulent lateral branches. A stem that is 4 to 6 inches long and has mature leaves but no buds or flowers will root better and create a more shapely plant.
Remove all but two terminal leaves and clip off the top half by an inch of the cutting, in order to remove any nascent flower buds and prevent moisture loss through evaporation. Rooting hormones are not required for sunflower cuttings to root properly, though it may accelerate the process.
If preferred, dust the leafless portion of the stem with industrial rooting hormone talc and tap the stem to remove any excess powder.
With the leafless section of the stem underneath the surface, pot the clipping in a sterile medium such as a half-sand, half-peat moss mix. Preserve light moisture in the medium by keeping it warm and moderately shaded. Covering the plant with a large clear plastic bag will help with roots.
In two to four weeks, gently tug the cutting to feel for movement, and if it doesn’t move, it has rooted.
– Propagation By Seed
If you plan on sowing dwarf sunflowers directly from seed, after the last frost, sow the seeds in groups of three to four, half an inch deep. Once the real leaves start to appear, thin this arrangement down to one plant.
If you wish to transplant seeds, sow one seed in every six-inch container or three seeds in each gallon container. Make sure you do this three to four weeks before planting out. Darf sunflowers do not like root disruption. Wait for three to four true leaves to develop before transplanting the seedlings to beds.
Sunflowers are occasionally impacted by illness, but it is not frequent. These plants are typically quite hardy. Leaf spot, which forms yellow areas on the leaf surface, might occur occasionally, but it is uncommon. Mildew and rot can be a concern sometimes, but not very often.
Sclerotinia stem rot, popularly known as white mold, is the most severe threat to sunflowers. These fungi can cause sudden leaf wilting, stem cankers, and root or head rot. Plant rotation, combined with proper watering procedures, can reduce the risk of this disease occurring.
There aren’t many pests that afflict small sunflowers since there aren’t many illnesses, but those cause havoc in droves. The following are the most common hazards to sunflowers:
– Sunflower Beetles
Sunflower beetles mainly feed on the foliage of sunflowers and do not harm older plants. The early leaves of young sunflower plants, on the other hand, can be damaged or destroyed by these pesky beetles.
Sunflower beetles are easily distinguishable. They are brown-red rounded beetles. They also have creamy reddish-brown red stripes on their wings. The larvae have green bodies that are circular. These pests are only found in North America and are the most severe threat to sunflowers.
– Sunflower Borers And Stem Maggots.
These pests can feed on sunflower stems by burrowing through them. This can quickly deplete the plant’s foliage and other flower parts.
Sunflowers are a favorite food of the Vanessa cardui caterpillar’s larvae. Although the damage is usually minor and does not require treatment, it is helpful to know what is feeding on your prized plants and reassure yourself that it is nothing evil; they are simply beautiful insects.
Frequently Asked Questions
– How Long Do Dwarf Sunflowers Last?
USDA plant hardiness zones two to eleven are ideal for dwarf sunflowers. These plants bloom from summer to early fall in these growing zones. You can even plant some later in the growing season to ensure a steady supply of blooms.
– How Long Do Dwarf Sunflowers Take To Grow?
Water thoroughly only every so often to encourage the development of a deep root system as your plant matures, which takes around 85 to 95 days for most sunflower kinds. Usually, watering once per week is enough; just ensure that the water does not pool in the soil.
– Do Dwarf Sunflowers Rebloom?
Dwarf sunflowers are comparable to full-size sunflowers, except depending on the type, they may produce numerous flowers per stalk. They are annual flowers that die after blooming.
– How Tall Do Dwarf Sunflowers Get?
Dwarf sunflowers are ideal for growing in pots, either alone or in combination with other types, or in the garden, where they will grow a little taller. Depending on the type and growth conditions, the average height is six to 42 inches.
– Where Are the Best Growing Zones And Conditions for Dwarf Sunflowers?
The USDA plant hardiness zones two to 11 are ideal for dwarf sunflowers. They blossom from summer to early fall in these growing zones. You can even plant some later in the growing season to ensure a steady supply of blooms. Keep these sunflowers clear of the wind if at all possible.
Sunflowers are charming plants, and if properly planted and cared for, they will make a lovely addition to your outdoor environment. Here’s what we covered throughout the article:
- Dwarf sunflowers are an excellent choice of sunflowers to add to your collection because they bring you vibrant colors without being stalky and taking up too much space.
- Most of these flowers only grow to be one to three feet tall.
- You may grow them indoors or outdoors in pots, provided they get adequate sunlight.
- There are many varieties of tiny sunflowers for you to choose from.
Now that you’re loaded with all this information on sunflowers, it’s time to plant your first dwarf sunflower plant. Good Luck!