Best Sunflower Seeds to Plant - Backyard Boss
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Best Sunflower Seeds to Plant

What’s the prettiest way to bring happiness to your home? Get the best sunflower seed and plant a sunflower garden!

Sunflowers are an iconic summer plant and can always brighten a person’s day. Not only does it make a great impression, but it’s also incredibly low-maintenance and easy to grow. Although most imagine sunflowers as bright yellow flowers with a brown center, they actually come in many colors, shapes, and sizes.

If you want to grow a sunflower paradise and don’t know where to start, read on to learn which is the best sunflower seed to plant in your garden!

Backyard Boss Top 5 Best Sunflower Seeds to Plant in 2021

Sow Right Seeds Mammoth Sunflower Seeds - Best Sunflower Seeds to PlantSow Right Seeds Mammoth Sunflower Seeds
  • Seeds per Packet: 70 - 80
  • Color: Yellow
  • Average Height: 8 - 12 Feet
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Zellajake Farm and Garden Teddy Bear Dwarf Sunflower Seeds - Best Sunflower Seeds to PlantZellajake Farm and Garden Teddy Bear Dwarf Sunflower Seeds
  • Seeds per Packet: 700
  • Color: Golden
  • Average Height: 4 - 5 Feet
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RattleFree Autumn Beauty Sunflower Seeds - Best Sunflower Seeds to PlantRattleFree Autumn Beauty Sunflower Seeds
  • Seeds per Packet: Approx. 100
  • Color: Gold, Orange, Red, and Plum
  • Average Height: 5 - 8 Feet
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Seed Needs ProCut Red Sunflower Seeds - Best Sunflower Seeds to PlantSeed Needs ProCut Red Sunflower Seeds
  • Seeds per Packet: 40
  • Color: Wine Red
  • Average Height: 4 - 6 Feet
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CZ Grain Chocolate Cherry Sunflower Seeds - Best Sunflower Seeds to PlantCZ Grain Chocolate Cherry Sunflower Seeds
  • Seeds per Packet: 50
  • Color: Chocolate Cherry
  • Average Height: 3 - 6 Feet
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Why You Can Trust Us

Growing sunflowers is an unspoken rite of passage for home gardeners thanks to its low-effort and high-reward nature. Unfortunately, some find growing sunflowers to be challenging, especially if they accidentally choose the wrong seed heads for their needs.

To help out, we used years worth of gardening experience, unbiased advice from gardeners of different backgrounds, and thorough research and trial to find the best sunflower seeds for different needs.

In case you need it, there’s also a bonus section at the end with need-to-know sunflower info, and have linked our sources to help with your research as much as we can!

Best Mammoth Sunflower Seeds

Sow Right Seeds Mammoth Sunflower Seeds
    These tall sunflowers with sturdy stems make a lasting impression on neighbors and children.



Why We Like It: These Mammoth Sunflowers are sure to make a mighty impression. They’re tall varieties with each growing up to 12 feet in height with a 14-inch sunflower head! It also yields a large number of edible delicious seeds for harvest in just 75 days after planting that you can store in airtight glass jars. These edible tasty seeds can be used for baking too!

Coming back to the sunflower plants, this can also attract bees, butterflies and, if you’re lucky, some lovely birds could make it their temporary perch. Luckily, this is incredibly low-maintenance and beginner-friendly, meaning anyone can have this gentle giant blooming in their yards in a matter of time.

Who Should Buy It: These tall varieties will grow to their full potential in spacious gardens and yards.

Best Double Bloomer

Zellajake Farm and Garden Teddy Bear Dwarf Sunflower Seeds
    These Teddy Bear sunflowers grow like golden pompoms and don’t require much maintenance.



Why We Like It: These bright Teddy Bear sunflowers produce golden fuzzy blooms that can grow up to five feet tall! It’s a low-maintenance plant for beginners that’s great for container gardening. It takes 75 days to fully mature and is great if you’re concerned about seasonal allergies since they produce low pollen levels but still attract lovely bees and butterflies.

Who Should Buy It: This sunflower seed would be great for novice gardeners who want an impressive sunflower hedge.

Best Multicolored

RattleFree Autumn Beauty Sunflower Seeds
    These sunflower plants can survive until late fall when it’s too chilly for other summer flowers.



Why We Like It: The Autumn Beauty Sunflower is true to its name— blooming from summer until late fall and blossoming with the shades of autumn. This fills your garden with bright blooms of golds, oranges, reds, and plums that keep your garden vibrant and lively even as the chill starts to seep in. They can grow up to eight feet tall and mature 90 days after planting. They also have sweet nectar that hummingbirds and butterflies love to feed on!

Who Should Buy It: This stays in full bloom even if your garden is in a city that grows cold quickly or experiences a bit of frost.

Best Single Stem

Seed Needs ProCut Red Sunflower Seeds
    These seeds grow into stunning wine-colored iconic flowers that can be cut for sneeze-free flower arrangements.



Why We Like It: This hybrid seed blooms into a pollen-free wine red sunflower. This ProCut variety is a non-GMO-based seed made to create floral arrangements that won’t trigger anyone’s allergies! These pollen-free blooms grow up to six feet tall within 60 days after seeding. They produce one sunflower per stem and blooms with an effortlessly striking deep color that’s hard to forget.

Who Should Buy It: This sunflower seed would be ideal for gardeners who’re looking for pollen-free flowers, especially if they live with someone sensitive to pollen.

Best Branching Sunflowers

CZ Grain Chocolate Cherry Sunflower Seeds
    These eye-catching chocolate cherry sunflowers act as a fantastic border for your garden flowers.



Why We Like It: These Chocolate Cherry Sunflowers bloom with vibrant red tips that darken into a creamy chocolate center and are hard to find in the average garden. These seeds germinate quickly and can mature in just 85 days, standing up to six feet tall and carrying several flowers per stock. Planting these effortlessly gives your garden a unique romantic look that can fascinate you, your neighbors, and beautiful wildlife!

Who Should Buy It: These would be great for those going for a romantic and mysterious look in their homes.

What to Keep in Mind Before Planting Sunflowers

two sunflowers on a blue table
Image Credit: chris liu via Unsplash

Before you plant sunflower seeds in your garden, there are some details you should consider first to ensure they grow healthy and beautiful.


As with any plant, sunflowers need to be grown in conditions that best replicate their natural environment. In a nutshell, sunflowers grow best in areas that receive at least six hours of direct sunlight per day, in loose and well-drained soil, and shielded against strong winds.

Ideal Weather

As for ideal planting time, the best time to plant sunflowers is during the spring, once you’re sure the frost won’t return. Specifically, soil temperature that sits around 70ºF – 85ºF is the optimal temperature for sunflower seed germination.

Type Of Sunflower

Sunflowers come in a beautiful array of colors, petal shapes, heights, and kinds of blooms. They can also be categorized according to growth habits, whether it grows one flower for a single stem or can branch out and grow multiple flowers in a single stock.


Sunflowers are both stunning and hardy. They’re drought-resistant and need minimal watering once their roots are established. However, they can’t be left unchecked and need additional protection against the wildlife they attract.


Sunflowers have their own set of disadvantages. Mainly, pests love feasting on sunflowers and this can be frustrating, Additionally, sunflowers are allelopathic, meaning they release a toxin that can negatively impact neighboring plants and inhibit their growth.

How to Plant Sunflowers

a bunch of sunflowers in a vase
Image Credit: Lotte de Jong via Unsplash

Growing a beautiful sunflower garden filled with multicolored or yellow blooms starts with a proper seeding procedure. You can learn all about how to grow sunflowers in detail with this article but if you want a summary, here are some tips for sunflowers:

Prepare your soil

Choose your flower bed carefully! Your sunflower should be planted in loose fertile and well-draining soil and away from areas that puddle. If you have compacted soil, you can till your garden bed or add several inches of compost and organic matter.

Bury and space your seeds

Once your soil is at the right temperature, you can plant your loose seeds. Bury them an inch deep and listen to your seed’s instructions to space them properly. This helps them grow their full size.

Generously water them as they germinate

To activate the growth process, be sure to generously water the soil. Until your sunflower has established a root system, water will help it grow faster and healthier.

Thin out your flowers

As they grow into seedlings, you’ll need to avoid stunting their growth by thinning your overcrowded sunflowers according to their recommended spacing. But only start thinning down once they have their true set of leaves.

Water weekly

When your flowers have established a root system, they’ll only need to be watered once a week. Try to water around their root system to avoid waterlogging them.

Sunflower Care and Maintenance Tips

fall colored sunflower on wooden table
Image Credit: Eric Tompkins via Unsplash

Growing a sunflower garden is amazingly rewarding! Here are some tips to help make the most out of this experience in case you need it.

Plan for a continuous bloom

There are two ways to keep gardens in bloom all-season-long: through deadheading or succession planting.

Deadheading is a technique that restarts the flowering process by snipping off flower heads once it starts wilting. On the other hand, succession planting is the process of planting new seeds every two weeks so your garden reaches full bloom at different times.

Don’t feed the pests

Your biggest threat when growing sunflowers are squirrels, cutworms, moths, grasshoppers, and similar pests who treat sunflower gardens as buffets.

Using organic insecticides and fungicides can help drive away harmful insects. You can also repel squirrels with a mesh cage or by spraying your flowers with a spicy pepper solution. To make your own hot pepper spray, mix one bottle of Tabasco or similar hot pepper sauce with one gallon of water. You can add an egg to the mix to repel squirrels who gnaw tree barks.

Harvest before they bloom

If you want to bring the beauty of your sunflowers indoors, there’s an art to harvest them at the right time. You should harvest them while their petals are still cupped, right before they bloom. This will keep your floral arrangement alive and vibrant for much longer.

How we Picked

When we set out to look for the best sunflower seeds to plant, we made sure they would live up to the highest gardening standards.

Our process started with thorough market research and studied the different variants available. We then sought out the help of experts and previous consumers to see which seed packs performed better than others. Finally, we made sure to see each seed grow firsthand and observed their different gardening needs.

After all this, we were able to find five different sunflower seeds that we fully trust would grow marvelously and could make your garden the envy of the neighborhood!

Our Pick of the Best Sunflower Seeds to Plant in 2021

While each sunflower is gorgeous in its own right, our favorite to grow is the Sow Right Seeds Mammoth Sunflower Seeds.

Not only are they great for making a memorable impression, but they’re also one of the most rewarding sunflower variants to cultivate. They’re surprisingly easy to grow and don’t require much gardening skill, making it a great project for anyone who can follow instructions. As a bonus, they also produce yummy sunflower seeds that you can harvest and snack on!

Unfortunately, not everyone has the space to grow mammoth sunflowers in their garden. Even so, regardless of which sunflower you choose from this list, we know growing them will make your garden look fantastic for the summer!