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Helianthus giganteus

giant sunflower add to wishlist

Plant types and subtypes: Perennials

Light Requirements: sun, part-sun

Water Use: medium

Soil Moisture: moist, wet

Soil Description: acid, loam, clay, sand

Height: 3'-9'

Bloom Time: July, August, September, October

Bloom Color: yellow

Leaf Color: green

Hardiness Zone: 4, 5, 6, 7, 8

Additional Tags: attracts bees, attracts birds, cottage garden plant, cut flowers, fall interest, naturalizing, pond margin plant, stream margin plant

Helianthus giganteus (giant sunflower)
  • Helianthus giganteus (giant sunflower)
  • Helianthus giganteus (giant sunflower)
  • Helianthus giganteus (giant sunflower)
  • Helianthus giganteus (giant sunflower)

Pricing & Availability

Description

Helianthus giganteus

Also known as:

giant sunflower

,

tall sunflower

Scientific Synonyms:

Helianthus alienus, Helianthus borealis, Helianthus subtuberosus, Helianthus validus

Description

Helianthus giganteus produces large plants, ranging from 3' to 9' tall depending on environmental conditions, but despite its specific epithet the flowers are relatively small and rarely exceed 3" in diameter. The flowers are borne on the branched top third of otherwise single, rigid central stems. These flowers are daisy-like, with yellow rays, and brown central disks.

Cultivation

The preference is moist to wet prairies in full sun, or moist open woodlands and margins in part-sun. It does best in well-drained soil that is consistently moist, and is an excellent candidate for use in rain gardens. It does not spread aggressively, but should be given plenty of room due to its sheer size. It enjoy a long blooming period, lasting 2 months during mid-summer to early fall. Zones 3-8

Propagation

It is easy to propagate by rhizome divisions, but may also be propagated by seed (they require a period of cold stratification, or by stem cuttings taken before the flower buds emerge.

Additional Notes

The flowers are very attractive to bees, butterflies, and other pollinators, while the seeds are a food source for many birds and small mammals. Herbivores can be attracted to the foliage.

Native Range & Classification

Recorded County Distribution: USDA data

Native Range:
AL, CT, DC, DE, GA, IA, IL, IN, KY, MA, MD, ME, MI, MN, MS, NC, NJ, NY, OH, PA, SC, TN, VA, VT, WI, WV

USDA Endangered Status:

  • Endangered: IL

Classification

Kingdom Plantae Plants
Subkingdom Tracheobionta Vascular plants
Superdivision Spermatophyta Seed plants
Division Magnoliophyta Flowering plants
Class Magnoliopsida Dicotyledons
Subclass Asteridae
Order Asterales
Family Asteraceae Aster family
Genus Helianthus sunflower
Species Helianthus giganteus giant sunflower