While its official name is Strawberry Blond, this flower could easily be renamed the Strawberry Lemonade Sunflower!
The vivid pink around the flower’s center with bright yellow petal tips makes me want a big mason jar full of freshly squeezed, ice-cold strawberry lemonade on a hot summer afternoon.
Regardless of what I would rename it, the aptly named Strawberry Blonde sunflower would make a gorgeous addition to your summer garden.
Read on to learn more about it!
Characteristics of the Strawberry Blonde Sunflower
This sunflower will grow to be six feet tall, with lots of branches. Lots of branches mean more flowers to cut to enjoy in your home or share with friends.
It’s relatively easy to grow and produces gorgeous pink and yellow blooms.
The best part? It’s pollen-free! Your allergies and whatever surfaces you put your cut flowers on will thank you.
The Strawberry Blonde sunflower will grow to be somewhere between 5.5-6 feet tall.
This well-producing plant will give you blooms up to six inches in diameter. Each bloom consists of a dark center and petals that start out pink near the center and melt into a bright yellow at the tip.
Because of their bright, cheerful colors, sunflowers are regularly cut and displayed in homes around the world.
Sunflowers are also known worldwide as a symbol of loyalty and devotion, thanks to a Greek myth about their origin!
History of the Strawberry Blonde Sunflower
In Greek mythology, a water nymph, Clytie, was hopelessly in love with the sun god, Helios. When he left her for someone else, she had his new lover killed in hopes of having Helios return to her.
That action backfired, and the sun god wanted nothing to do with Clytie. His disinterest did nothing to quelch her love, and Clytie stood outside on a rock for nine days and nine nights, watching as Helios drove his sun chariot across the sky every day.
Eventually, she was turned into a flower, and it’s said that is why the sunflower follows the sun— it’s a scorned lover watching their love cross the sky day after day.
As far as the Strawberry Blonde sunflower’s history, there isn’t much to be found. This hybrid started showing up all over gardener’s social media accounts in the late 2010s.
Since then, it’s only grown in popularity, largely due to its unique coloring.
Growing Strawberry Blonde Sunflowers at Home
Lucky for you, the Strawberry Blonde sunflower is a low-maintenance, high-impact flower you can easily grow at home.
Planting and Caring Instructions
While it’s easy to grow, we want to make sure you have a step-by-step guide to help your sunflowers thrive.
When to Plant
When you plant your sunflower seeds will be determined by whether you’re going to start them inside or sow them directly into the ground.
Planting your Strawberry Blonde sunflower seeds indoors about four weeks before the last frost means you get to enjoy the beautiful blooms a month earlier than you would if you sowed directly in the ground.
Fill a recycled paper egg carton with potting mix. Poke a hole in the center of each compartment and place a seed in it about 1/2″ down. Cover with dirt and mist until the soil is moist.
Place the carton on a sunny windowsill and keep the soil moist. To help hold in moisture, try covering your egg carton with plastic wrap to act almost like a greenhouse.
Seeds should start to germinate within 6-10 days of planting.
Transplant the seedlings outside once they’re two inches tall.
If you don’t feel like messing with starting seedlings indoors, wait until after the last frost of the year to plant your sunflower seeds.
The seeds will germinate best in soil that is around 70°F, which typically happens three weeks after the last frost.
Plant your Strawberry Blonde sunflower seeds six inches apart and 1/2″ deep in the soil. If doing more than one row, space rows about 2-3 feet apart.
In order to thrive and produce as many blooms as possible, sunflowers need at least 6-8 hours of full, direct sunlight.
Since they’re relatively low-maintenance flowers and a fantastic draw to pollinators like bees and birds, try planting them around the edge of your garden for an amazing pop of color.
Sunflowers will grow in just about any soil that isn’t easily waterlogged.
If you want to give them additional nutrients, they do even better in alkaline soil with a pH between 6.0-7.5.
When adding nutrients to the soil, take care to not add too much nitrogen. Too much nitrogen sometimes causes sunflowers to focus more on growing healthy foliage instead of gorgeous blooms.
While working to germinate, your Strawberry Blonde sunflowers will need to be consistently moist. Lightly water every day until the seeds sprout.
Once the seeds have sprouted, they need roughly one inch of water every week.
That can be achieved by one weekly watering that gets the top six inches of soil wet.
Pests & Diseases
Thankfully, this variety of sunflowers is pretty disease resistant.
The biggest pest you’re going to encounter will probably be deer and birds that want to make your eye candy actual candy for their bellies!
To deter birds, try using a scarecrow. Simple fencing will keep hungry deer from eating young sunflower plants.
Pruning and Cutting
When your sunflower plants are between 6-12 inches, prune them by cutting off any dry or dead leaves as well as extra-leggy stems.
Trimming those back will encourage the plant to use its energy to produce more healthy blooms.
When you cut your blooms is up to you and the style you desire.
They can be cut as a tight bundle of petals or wait a while longer for them to open up to their full bloom potential.
Where to Buy Strawberry Blonde Sunflowers
During the summer, keep your eyes out at local farmer’s markets for bouquets featuring Strawberry Blonde sunflowers.
If you’re ready to grow your own, seeds may be available to buy at a local nursery. They’re also available to purchase online.
Wrapping up the Strawberry Blonde Sunflower
The Strawberry Blonde sunflower’s unique pink and yellow petals make it a feast for your eyes. Its ease of growth and beautiful blooms make it a no-brainer to add to your garden!
Check out our sunflower page to keep learning about sunflowers!
- About the Author
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Stephanie Lamberth is a writer who gained most of what she knows about gardening from summers spent on her family’s farm tending, picking, and storing the produce they grew.
Her family started and ran a thriving farm that fed hundreds, if not thousands, of people in the community with fresh, naturally grown produce. She learned the effort and the reward of growing your own food!
Stephanie now lives in Tennessee with her husband and three kids. Their schedules don’t allow for a large garden, but she loves incorporating herbs from their flowerbeds in her kitchen and using her knowledge to help others.
Stephanie can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org