Volunteer Sunflower

As summer draws to a close and leaves start to fall from the trees, it makes sense to spend a bit of time thinking about what worked well in the yard this year and whether any changes should be made when the 2013 planting season rolls around. I’ll be making a thorough assessment of our yard over the next couple of weeks. But I’ve already made one addition to the list of things we’ll plant next year – sunflowers!

We have a just one sunflower in our back flower bed this year. Perhaps a passing bird dropped a seed from a nearby feeder, or it came extra with our new topsoil. Whatever the source, I first noticed our volunteer sunflower in late May. It’s a good thing I was weeding that section of the yard, as I fear anyone else in the family wouldn’t have recognized the distinctive leaves and it would have been pulled as a “weed”.

A couple weeks ago, my tentative identification was confirmed, as the blossom started to form…

At this point, I knew it would be just a few more days before our volunteer sunflower would be ready to show its face.

And this week, when its bright yellow petals came into view, the rest of the family quickly identified our 2012 volunteer…

The bees, butterflies and other bugs love to stop by and visit this beautiful flower.

Here it is in context…

Here’s our volunteer sunflower in context, nestled between the cottoneaster hedge, blue spruce, cosmos (that have yet to bloom), purple cone flowers and scarlet flax.

What about you? Are any volunteers adding to the beauty and charm of your garden this year?

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