I’ve been studying and studying the list of sunflowers on MinnesotaWildflowers.info, trying to identify a very tall sunflower that grew in our yard this year.
I don’t remember buying it, and there is no tag, which suggests I didn’t. It it could be a volunteer plant, like so many others in our garden, though there are at least six stems, so that seems unlikely. Last fall I collected seeds while on a hike, and this plant may have been from a packet that I labeled “giant sunflower.”
It has leaves like Maximilian sunflower…
…but petals more like Jerusalem artichoke.
I’ve been calling it “giant sunflower” all summer – but that is the common name of an actual plant, and this one does not have the characteristic hairy stem or toothed leaves.
This is as close as I got to taking a photo of the flower’s bract:
I’m not exactly tall, but even still, this plant towers over me:
Well, whatever its name, I enjoyed watching it grow and bloom. And so did the bees and bugs.
Now, it’s time to collect seeds (this time, to make sure it doesn’t take over the entire garden).
I’m going with Maximilian sunflower, with petals that grew thinner than normal, until I learn otherwise.