Black Seed Oil Sunflowers

Sunflowers – Click for Larger View.

Corn is hard to grow in our soil and climate but sunflowers and pumpkins are very easy. This variety is black oil seed sunflowers – something new for me. Generally I grow Mammoth sunflowers simply because I enjoy their immense size.

Come fall the pigs and chickens will harvest the various plantings to supplement the waning pastures. Then they’ll winter over in the summer gardens, adding fertilizer so that by next spring I can begin another cycle of planting for their winter food.

Outdoors: 78°F/50°F Sunny
Tiny Cottage: 67°F/65°F

Daily Spark: I love pigs, they turn vegetables into bacon. -Anon

About Walter Jeffries

Tinker, Tailor...
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15 Responses to Black Seed Oil Sunflowers

  1. Janet says:

    Wowsa! What a breathtaking photo! I love it! I hope you don’t mind if I snag it for my new desktop pic!

    • Feel free to use the photo on your desktop. I have no objection to people using them for their own personal consumption as long as my URL is left on the image so people can find my blog. Cheers, -Walter

  2. Jon says:

    I’m always so jealous of your sunflowers. They’re so big and plentiful! Mine are theys little spindly things. What is your secret?

  3. Ant says:

    Lovein your flower photos. You sure do live in a beautiful place. Makes sense to have sunflowers for your chickens but I wouldnot have though of it for the pigs. All winter I feed them and the birds plant some of them in that area to.

  4. Mary says:

    Wowsa!! Stunning foto. I didn’t realize how stunning and filled with details until I clicked it and got the big version. I found three bees. Do yu have any problem with that bee disease?

    • We haven’t heard of any and we have a lot of bees, both wild and domestic. I have not heard of the bee disease being in Vermont. There is no pesticide or herbicide use in our valley, no cell phone access, few people.

      • Patrick says:

        A friend does bees and honey for a hobby. Last word from some researchers is they found “something” in the affected colonies. They ground the remains of affected colonies into dust and then did extensive (and expensive) genetic testing. By comparing/contrasting many colonies in many regions over time they found what they think might be a fungal trace not found in unaffected hives.

        It’s been tough finding causes, because bees are wild roamers and they live by picking up random pollen and dust and taking it home. It’s tough to pinpoint their DNA or to find “the cause” from one colony. It’s taking lots of data and lots of testing to figure it all out.

        I hope they figure it out soon. Not only do we all collectively need bees, but I personally need my honey!

  5. Nathan says:

    Walter, Are you using sunflowers as a supplement to your other feed sources? If so, do you turn the pigs out on them or do you harvest the sunflowers and feed them to the pigs? I have a small patch of sunflowers and clipped a few and threw them to the hogs. They seemed to enjoy the stalk but thus far they have not taken a strong interest in the head itself where the seeds remain. Thoughts?

    • For the most part (99%?) the pigs self harvest the sunflowers, sunchokes, pumpkins, squash, apples, beets, turnips and such that we grow. We raise these things mostly in the winter paddocks which are summer gardens. Then starting right about now in the fall we begin turning the herds into these areas. Ours devour the heads first on the sunflowers. Stalks are a distant third after leaves.

  6. Nathan says:

    It looks as though the pigs have changed their mind as they hammered all of the sunflowers I have tossed them. Walter, I was wondering if you might have a thought on this… Sometime in the spring either I dropped or the pigs had planted a “bush” of corn. Essentially corn seed planted in a high density in a 5 foot circle. 80 days later when the pigs came back around it was roughly 5 feet high and resembled a very healthy “grass” When the pigs got their hands on it, they destroyed it within minutes. Could broadcasted corn be a viable grazing option? What are your thoughts?

  7. shana says:

    crazy late here but . . . Im wondering if you prefered the black oil sunflowers or the mammoth for the pigs. Trying to figure out which is best to grow for my KuneKunes.

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