Saturday, August 14, 2010

Oh Happy Sunflower Days

The sun rises in a haze of low hanging white across the fields of northwest Ohio. The crickets break out in song just as the cicadas end their happy announcement that August is here. In the garden, I’ve been waiting anxiously for the sunflowers to burst into bright yellow petals surrounding black-seeded centers and oh happy day, the grand opening has begun

I love how sunflowers follow the sun throughout the day welcoming the morning light with faces turned toward the east and ending the day with heads tipped to the west as the sun dips below the horizon.

Standing quietly in the garden as the sun fades, I can almost hear an audible sigh of goodbye that emanates from the tall golden lookouts. 

The ornamental sunflowers that stand between 4 and 5 feet tall are blooming now. In my exuberance I’ve taken over a 100 photos of the only two that sprung from seeds planted in the spring.

Behind the ornamentals, thick stemmed giant sunflowers hold aloft large buds enveloped in a cloak of green.

When the time is right buds will burst into rays of sunny yellow to reveal black seeds and miniature blossoms that attract honeybees anxious to sip nectar and inadvertently rubbing against pollen until tiny saddle bags appear on the sides of legs. The bees tolerate a couple clicks of the camera, but then fly with a warning to, back off we’ve got work to do!

Finally, the large clay pot of teddy bear sunflowers shows buds developing. I’ll cut a few and put them in a container to brighten the walnut table in the dining room as soon as the shaggy heads smile up at me. 

The ultimate sun worshipper, sunflowers never kneel, but stand tall honoring the source that brings them life with heads bowed in humble gratitude and in turn offer me so much joy that I would build a house of sunflowers, place a red chair in the center and live content.

"Bring me then the plant that points to those bright Lucidities swirling up from the earth,
And life itself exhaling that central breath!
Bring me the sunflower crazed with the love of light.”
~ Eugenio Montale

I'm not quite ready to don my autumn colors.  There's still summer in the air!  Check out the free header, August Seas.


  1. You know, just before I sat down to do some blog-reading, I thought how nice it would be to see what August looks like in other parts of this country (and the world). Yours is the first blog and I got exactly what I wanted! Lucky you to have sunflowers growing in your garden. Our summer here in NJ has been hot, hot, hot and the grass is the colour of masking tape and the trees look rather withered. Seeing your beautiful sunflower photos is a real treat!

    I like how you describe the sunflowers as the ultimate sunworshipper - never kneeling but standing tall, honoring the source that brings them life.

    And you know, I remember seeing a tutorial in a book...looking it up...The Daring Book for Girls by Andrea J. Buchanan...on how to make a sunflower fort. Wouldn't that be cool?!

  2. Yay!!! What a super dazzling post...I am spellbound by sunflowers! Wonderful post!! MAGICAL!

  3. Susanna...I'm so glad you stopped by. I am enamored of sunflowers in all their forms and varieties. It's been a blistering hot, dripping humidity summer here in Ohio, too. The grass has become crunchy. I read many years ago how to make a sunflower house, so I tried it one year. I even planted morning glories to crawl up the stalks and make a roof. For some reason the sunflowers didn't grow that year that year. Seed failure, I guess. The book sounds like fun, I'm going to check it out.

    Have a wonderful evening!

  4. Kiki...thanks for stopping with your bright, shining spirited comments! You are such a pleasure!

    Have a grand evening!

  5. Your sunflowers are fabulous, don't you just love them? Do tell, how do you make a toad abode from a clay pot?

  6. Beautiful!
    Thank you for this.

  7. Hello Theresa O,
    What a gorgeous essay on your sunflower. I especially adore the photo of the pre~blossom kiss!! Fabulous. Hope you will enjoy a lazy Sunday!


  8. There is nothing prettier than a sunflower whether it is a single bloom, a vase in the house or a field, all with their pretty faces turned towards the sun. I remember from my childhood, 'Bill and Ben the flowerpot men' The sunflower had a face and talked to the flowerpot men who were made of varying sized flower pots.

  9. Hi Robin...I do adore sunflowers, any where or any time. A quick toad abode: take a clay pot and knock an entrance into it with a hammer. Turn the pot upside down and there ya go! Of course, you could get artistic and add touches with paint, but I wanted a quick cover from three naughty felines and the sun. A clay pot saucer placed near the abode makes a nice little pond if kept filled with water.

    Ohh MJ...thank you for stopping by. I hope your weekend is going well. See you Monday?

    Constance...I stared at that bud photo off and on for a couple days trying to figure out how to describe it and there you went and did it perfectly..."pre-blossom kiss" Thanks for stopping by!

    Rose...I've never heard of Bill and Ben the flowerpot men, but they sound like a fun crowd to hang with. I've never seen a field of sunflowers, but oh how I'd like to.

    I hope everyone is enjoying a wonderful Sunday!

  10. Teresa how do you. Keep. The clay pot from cracking up?

  11. firstly, i love your new header...i have not been online so don't know if it is actually new but new to me anyway...and adore the sunflowers, they are such a happy flower and always looking up at the sun...there is something so wonderful about that♥

  12. Dear Teresa, I can well understand your fascination with sunflowers as I love them too. Thrughout Hungary they are grown as a crop and, at this time of year, countless thousands of sunflowers glow in fields as far as the eye can see. A remarkable sight.

  13.'s wonderful that you visited. I hope you're feeling better. Yes, the header is new. I enjoy making them so much that I change headers almost every month. I also offer free headers for anyone who wants one.

    Thanks for stopping by and take care of you!

    Hello Edith...I am fascinated by flowers from bud to spent bloom to seed. I would love to see fields of sunflowers. I'm sure it is indeed a remarkable sight. Well...maybe some day.

  14. hi good day nice post and i enjoy reading it . beautiful shots you got on the sunflower very alive and attractive . i hope you have some post about garden accessories and wind spinners
    im interested on this i hope you can help me . thank you!


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