Friday, July 17, 2009

My Towering Sunflower

If you read my previous two posts about Sunflowers, then you know I was leading up to this one to show off my tallest Sunflower ever. It is starting to be top heavy, so I decided to go ahead and photograph it before it might blow over.

It is 9 1/2 feet tall. Of course, with me photographing it from the bottom looking upwards, it appears to be taller than the house! If you read the previous post and clicked the link to the website of the world's record holder for the tallest Sunflower,
then you know my sunflower is not even half as tall as the world record! Can you image a Sunflower so tall?

And we didn't plant this Sunflower either. Here's how it came about. Ollie the Parrot is very picky about his mixed food and will not eat certain things in the mix. He will eat some of the sunflower seeds, but isn't crazy about them. If he had his way, he would just eat peanuts!

When Ollie is done picking through his food each day, it gets dumped near one of the bird feeders outside the next morning. Occasionally a seed, such as a sunflower seed will blow to another part of the yard and sprout and grow. That is how this Sunflower came to grow at the edge of the driveway, along the sidewalk in the back yard. It is growing on the edge of a patch of Hollyhocks, so it really stands out and towers above them.

We have a patch of a variety of Sunflowers planted in another part of the back yard, and have left space in between to plant more at different intervals. They will surely brighten the back yard up and be a pretty sight from the highway. I will take a picture of them once they are in bloom.

And here's a photo of Ollie the Amazon Parrot that I mentioned. Thanks to Ollie's picky eating habits, we have the "Towering Sunflower!"

By the way, Ollie is at least thirty years old!

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Maria said...

Greetings from Josephine and Tweetie who would like Ollie to know they too are finicky about their sunflower seeds and definitely prefer peanuts. However, they have asked me to plant rejected seeds near the back door so they can watch them grow like Ollie's. Maybe next year, we can match your photos.

John said...

@Maria, I relayed the message to Ollie and gave him a peanut, which made him happy (although he was ready to call it a night). He doesn't talk, but meows like a cat. And if the phone rings he starts squawking and people have said "it sounds like somebody is being murdered in your house!"

Yes, you should recycle those seeds and plant the leftovers. If you think Ollie is picky, you should see Frieda the Cockatoo. She digs through her food and slings it all over the place...she's one messy bird. I'm lucky to have an enclosed side porch for her to have her own room. She's not lonely, since it has windows on all four sides--spoiled bird!

Yes, please do match the photos next year! I guess the parrot food must have the giant variety of sunflower seed!

kenju said...

Ollie is a beauty!! My daughter-in-law has a sun conure, but the little devil hates me.

What a gorgeous sunflower! I love volunteers. I used to get some when I fed the birds regularly. I don't do that anymore - it upsets my cats! LOL

Anonymous said...

WOW... big flower... and a cute bird.

Have you had Ollie for the 30 years+?

John said...

@kenju, Believe me Ollie is one mean bird too. He hisses at strangers, and I always tell people "you will get bit!" Especially my grandson would stick his finger in the cage and pull it out real fast...he was just lucky he didn't get bit, but he thought it was fun!

Thanks for the compliments on Ollie & the Towering Sunflower.

@kbnky, you got that right! Thanks for leaving a comment! Hope all is well!

Mary Ellen said...

The sunflower is way cool..but OH! OH! OH! I LOVE PARROTS! I'm a huge fan of birds in general, and with all the bird feeders in my back yard, it's bird central. It's also attracking chipmunk's, however, and they aren't satisfied with just eating the bird seed that falls from the feeders, they are getting into my potted flowers and digging holes and eating out the roots. Suddenly, there is a dead flower and if I pick it roots. Gone. Ugh...if I ever get my hands on one of those guys!

John said...

@Mary_Ellen, Glad you like the Sunflower and Ollie the Parrot. I like to see all the birds at the birdfeeders too, and with all the sunflowers, hope to see more Cardinals! I wonder what can be done about the chipmunks? Cats come to mind, but they would bother the birds more than chipmunks!

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