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Bleeding heart false sunflower care

Bleeding heart false sunflower care

Bleeding heart false sunflower care

Heliopsis helianthoides is a mouthful, but it basically means sunflower-like. (Helios was the Greek sun god.) And that's what these plants are. Although similar in looks, Heliopsis helianthoides is not the same as the perennial sunflower in the genus, and consequently it's been given the common name of false sunflower.

Sunflower

Also known as oxeye sunflowers, false sunflowers are easy-growing herbaceous perennial plants that naturalize in grasslands and at the edge of woodlands. They are a native wildflower in a large portion of North America—everywhere except for the western third of the continent. In the garden, they're best started in the spring or fall, and they grow fairly quickly but likely won't bloom in their first year. False sunflowers feature triangular-shaped leaves and branching stems that allow the plants to grow in a bushy habit. The double or single daisy-like, yellow-orange flowers surround a cone-shaped, golden-brown center disk. You can start false sunflowers by seed in either the spring or fall. For spring, start seeds indoors four to six weeks before your last frost date. In the fall, you can start seeds in flats or direct sow in mid- to late August. As perennials, they tend to begin blooming in their second year, so a spring seedling might not flower the year it's planted. However, seeds started in the fall should provide blooms the following summer.

This is a reliable repeat bloomer, and you should have flowers from summer into fall. Deadheading (removing spent blooms) will help to keep new buds forming and give the plant a tidier appearance. Plus, false sunflowers make lovely cut flowers and are very attractive to hummingbirds, bees, and butterflies. False sunflowers are cold-hardy perennials that will come back year after year in northern climates up to USDA growing zone 3. Some varieties also have good heat tolerance, making them ideal for the southern end of the plant's growing zones. These plants also aren't overly picky about humidity. (Source: www.thespruce.com)

 

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