November 8th, 2010
Helianthus annuus ‘Elves Blend’

Elves Blend sunflower

I like to try new ornamental sunflower varieties every year. No matter how the breeders try to “improve” sunflowers, they remain an unfussy, straightforward flower. There’s something very egalitarian about sunflowers. This fall I was attracted to ‘Elves Blend’ (from Botanical Interests) because it was advertised as a dwarf variety, growing only 16-24 inches tall.

Elves Blend sunflower

I planted them on September 13th in one of my future larkspur beds. I planned on them blooming in the fall to provide some interest until I could get the larkspur planted. Then after the sunflowers were felled by freeze, I’d put the larkspur seedlings in. I completely miscalculated when the leaves would fall. Here it is two months later, the leaves are still on the trees, and the sunflowers are in shade most of the day.

This is probably why they are only 6 to 12 inches tall! They aren’t happy but they’re trying their darnedest.They began blooming on Halloween.

If you like sunflowers but feel like you just don’t have the space for huge towering ones, ‘Elves Blend’ is just the ticket.

Elves Blend sunflower

by M Sinclair Stevens

One Response to post “Helianthus annuus ‘Elves Blend’”

  1. From Linda Lehmusvirta Austin Texas:

    Thanks for this tip! First, I never realized there was a short one, and second, I didn’t realize you could plant them in September! Will add to next year’s list because this is gorgeous!

    Sometimes planting sunflowers in the fall works, sometimes not. In 2008, I had lovely sunflowers blooming on December 15th for GBBD. In 2009, we got our first big freeze on December 5th before any sunflowers had opened. — mss