Sunflowers nodding in the breeze create an effective screen.
You can create natural boundaries in your yard with sunflowers. Available in a huge variety, with some mammoth and towering, and others reaching waist height or shorter, sunflowers grow energetically in a garden. Grow sunflowers as a screen by planting a combination of mammoth and dwarf varieties. The plants will grow to become a thick and beautiful barrier in your landscape, creating privacy and screening areas of your yard from view. Does this Spark an idea?
1. Prepare the area where you want the screen. Cultivate the soil with the garden spade, working it down to a depth of about 4 to 6 inches. Improve the soil structure and composition by adding about 2 inches of aged compost over the top of the soil. Work the compost and soil thoroughly and rake the ground smooth.
2. Create two rows for the sunflower screen. Make a back row for the mammoth sunflowers and make a front row about 12 inches in front of the back row.
3. Place the mammoth sunflower seeds along the back row, spacing the seeds every 6 inches. Place the dwarf sunflower seeds along the front row, spacing them every 4 to 6 inches. Cover the seeds with 1/2 inch of soil and pat the soil down firmly.
4. Stretch the window screen over the rows to protect the sunflower seeds from birds and rodents that might disturb them. Anchor the screen along the edges with the rocks.
5. Water the sunflower seeds thoroughly. Keep the soil evenly moist while the sunflowers germinate — up to two weeks.
6. Watch the planting area for germinated seeds. When you see the seedlings emerge, remove the window screen. Continue watering the soil to keep it evenly moist.
7. Thin the sunflowers when they reach heights of about 4 inches. Pull the weakest seedlings to leave the mammoths growing every 18 inches and the dwarfs growing every 6 to 12 inches along the rows.
8. Fertilize the sunflowers about once a month after thinning. Mix the fertilizer with water according to package recommendations. Pour the fertilizer over the soil carefully.