Monday, August 27, 2012

The amazing flowerless sunflower

This sunflower is tall and strong.  At the time of these photos, taken last week, it was nearly my height (I am 5'7").  Today, it is easily 6 inches taller than me. 

However, one of this sunflower's most distinct features is that is completely lacks flowers!  What happened is that as it was growing, something was regularly chewing off the top (I suspect deer, based on the height of the chewing... and it is a little disturbing to imagine deer that close to my house, as this flower is growing alongside our back deck).  You can see in the picture above that the lower leaves and "branches" are still getting chewed on.  Below is a closer version:
I do, however, have some hope that the sunflower is perhaps outgrowing its predators.  Because it does look like there may be some flowers trying to blossom at the very top.
Is that a flower, or just wishful thinking?
I have not tried to grow a lot of ornamental, non-edible plants... but the feeling that I can't save them from deer is just as frustrating as when it was my vegetables!  (and I guess technically sunflowers do provide an edible product, even if that is not why we planted them)

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