– Perennial Sunflower
(For the annual varieties see under “Sunflower”).
Three to seven feet.
Flowers yellow, August to October.
The perennial Sunflowers are strong growers with
running tuberous roots something like those of
their relation the Jerusalem Artichoke.
invaluable as giving colour to the garden up to
and beyond the autumn frosts.
Their vigour is
sometimes superfluous, and their roots invade
their neighbours and are often difficult to get
rid of. For this reason circumspection must be
used in choosing a site.
The roots proper for
planting are the long thumb-shaped tubers which
grow vigorously away from the parent clump; pieces
of the old rootstock with the stumps of the flowering
stems are worse than useless.
Set the roots in
the ground in their natural horizontal position
and not too deep; the soil should be deeply dug
– two spits and more – and plenty
of manure worked in. when the flower stems rise,
they may need support from sticks and string;
when the flowers are over, cut down the plants
to a few inches from the ground.
A clump may stand
two years in one place, but no more, as the incessant
effort of the roots is to get away from the stock
and colonise new ground.
The following are some of the best sorts; it should
be remembered that new kinds and “improvements”
are announced almost every season.
Helianthus G. Moon. Single yellow flowers, stout
growth, four feet. September and October:
Helianthus multiflorus Soleil d’Or, double flowers,
quilled and globular. Three to four feet. August
Helianthus multiflorus major. Single. Six feet. September,
Helianthus rigidus semiplenus. Semi-double with dark centre.
Flowers will November.
Helianthus rigidus Miss Mellish. Very large single flowers.
Six feet. September.
Helianthus rigidus. Often called Harpalium rigidum. Three
to four feet. Free grower, single yellow flowers.
See also : Sunflower