Sunflower issues

Chickenma

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When do you cut the head of the sunflower for seeds? The sunflower is not dead yet but the flowers itself is rotting and soft in some spots of it. I did see the seeds are in there. I am new to sunflowers and was wanting to save seeds for next year and eat some as well. But not sure if it’s possible if the flower is rotting. Most of my sunflowers have turned out like this.
 

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flowerbug

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When do you cut the head of the sunflower for seeds? The sunflower is not dead yet but the flowers itself is rotting and soft in some spots of it. I did see the seeds are in there. I am new to sunflowers and was wanting to save seeds for next year and eat some as well. But not sure if it’s possible if the flower is rotting. Most of my sunflowers have turned out like this.
they should have some viable seeds on them when the edges start to curl/dry but beware bringing the whole head inside as some seeds may already be infected with other seed eating tiny wasps, etc. we just cut the heads when they start curling and put them someplace safe from birds, mice, chipmunks to finish drying.

some people just cover the heads with mesh to keep the animals off until the head is fully dry. we don't usually do that because of rains in the late summer and fall.
 

Collector

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Go ahead and cut it off now, leave some stem a foot or less to tie twine to. We hang ours in the greenhouse now, but we used to have a breezeway we hung them to dry under it. Anywhere under cover from the elements will do, let hang until you need them in the spring.
 

canesisters

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I just cut mine last week because the seeds were starting to 'wiggle' when I rubbed my thumb over them. I put them on top of the freezer in the barn - MISTAKE! We've had a couple of very foggy, damp mornings and they all got wet. Should've hung them up. I left them out in the sun today and will toss a rope over a joist in the barn when I get home to hang them.
.. maybe the birds won't notice?
 

flowerbug

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we have blue jays that will find them anyplace outside... probably would try for them in the garage too if we had them hung out in the open. some of them are pretty brave and know we won't hurt them.
 

Just-Moxie

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When I grew them, when they started to dry for seed, and bent their heads down....I bagged them in paper bags, wired the ends shut, and hung them in a sunny dry spot to finish. I think, if you get them started drying, they should be fine. Then just toss the rotted seeds to the birds, or save the whole head for them for winter.
 
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