Alphabetical Plant Listing

Helianthus occidentalis (Western Sunflower)

Western Sunflower, Fewleaf Sunflower, Mcdowell's Sunflower


Perfect for dry soils, Helianthus occidentalis (Western Sunflower) is a showy perennial forming a rosette of large, ovate, medium green, basal leaves. Blooming for an extended period from mid-summer to fall, a profusion of elegant star-like flowers, 2 in. wide (5 cm), are borne on upright, almost naked, stems. Each flowering stalk terminates in 1-12 flowerheads that are usually arranged in a panicle. The flowers are particularly attractive to birds as they love to eat the seeds directly from the seedheads. Because of its prominent basal leaves and nearly naked flowering stalks, this perennial wildflower has a very distinct appearance among Helianthus spp. (sunflowers). Well-behaved, it is perfect for the sunny border and very effective for erosion control.

  • Typically grows up to 2-4 ft. tall (60-120 cm) and 18-24 in. wide (45-60 cm). Will spread by rhizomes to form large colonies.
  • Prefers full sun in average, dry to medium, well-drained soils. However, this plant is not too fussy about soils and tolerates a wide range of conditions including poor sandy soils, humusy loams and clays. Drought tolerant.
  • Low maintenance, this is an excellent choice for sunny borders, cottage gardens, bird or butterfly gardens, wildflower gardens, prairies and meadows.
  • Attractive to bird, butterflies, it is deer resistant.
  • Divide every 3-4 years to control spread and maintain plant vigor.
  • Native to Central and eastern United States

Learn How To Plant, Care and Grow Gorgeous Sunflowers

Cherished for their beauty, Sunflowers (Helianthus) are striking ornamental annuals or perennial plants grown for their colorful summer and fall blooms. Fast-growing, they can reward you with glamorous blooms between 55 and 100 days after planting. Here are some basic rules that need to be followed to enjoy their splendid flowers.Read More

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Requirements

Hardiness 3 – 9
Climate Zones 1, 1A, 1B, 2, 2A, 2B, 3, 3A, 3B, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24
Plant Type Perennials
Plant Family Helianthus - Sunflowers
Exposure Full Sun
Season of Interest Summer (Mid,Late)
Fall
Height 2' – 4' (60cm – 120cm)
Spread 1' – 2' (30cm – 60cm)
Spacing 18" – 24" (45cm – 60cm)
Water Needs Low
Maintenance Average
Soil Type Chalk, Clay, Loam, Sand
Soil pH Acid, Alkaline, Neutral
Soil Drainage Well-Drained
Characteristics Cut Flowers, Showy
Tolerance Clay Soil, Deer, Drought, Dry Soil, Rocky Soil
Attracts Birds, Butterflies
Garden Uses Beds and Borders
Garden Styles Informal and Cottage, Prairie and Meadow

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Great Plant Combination Ideas with Helianthus - Sunflowers

Guides with Helianthus - Sunflowers


By marich / Shutterstock

While every effort has been made to describe these plants accurately, please keep in mind that height, bloom time, and color may differ in various climates. The description of these plants has been written based on numerous outside resources.


Requirements

Hardiness 3 – 9
Climate Zones 1, 1A, 1B, 2, 2A, 2B, 3, 3A, 3B, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24
Plant Type Perennials
Plant Family Helianthus - Sunflowers
Exposure Full Sun
Season of Interest Summer (Mid,Late)
Fall
Height 2' – 4' (60cm – 120cm)
Spread 1' – 2' (30cm – 60cm)
Spacing 18" – 24" (45cm – 60cm)
Water Needs Low
Maintenance Average
Soil Type Chalk, Clay, Loam, Sand
Soil pH Acid, Alkaline, Neutral
Soil Drainage Well-Drained
Characteristics Cut Flowers, Showy
Tolerance Clay Soil, Deer, Drought, Dry Soil, Rocky Soil
Attracts Birds, Butterflies
Garden Uses Beds and Borders
Garden Styles Informal and Cottage, Prairie and Meadow

Great Plant Combination Ideas with Helianthus - Sunflowers

Guides with Helianthus - Sunflowers

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