How to Plant and Maintain Sunflowers in Containers

The Lemon Queen Sunflower, a dwarf variety of the Sunflower (Helianthus annuus), is a good option for container planting. The sunflower is hardy, resisting drought easily once it becomes established (needs plenty of water beforehand). Not only can it survive a variety of environmental conditions, but it also produces an abundance of seeds, which is good for birds, other pollinators, and even humans! In addition, sunflowers have beautiful, large flowers which make a great addition to your home.

Sunflowers grow best in locations with full sun, blooming during summer or early fall. They prefer long, hot summers to flower well, but can also grow well in locations with shorter summers. The mature height of the Lemon Queen Sunflower is approximately 5 feet ( 1.5 meters) which is smaller than the common variety of sunflower.


  • Sow seeds 4-5 inches apart and 1/2 inch deep directly into pots filled with well moistened, good quality potting mix. It takes approximately 8-10 days to germinate.
  • When seedlings are several inches tall, transplant them to larger pots that are at least 12-18 inches deep while making sure that they are spread out. In other words, no more than 1 plant per 8 inch pot (diameter), or 3 plants per 15 inch pot. In large planters, you can keep the seedlings 6 inches apart.
  • Keep soil moist and well weeded. Protect seedlings from hungry or nesting birds with netting or plastic berry baskets.
  • Place container in an area with plenty of direct sunlight.

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