Sunflower seeds are common all around the world. People generally prefer eating sunflower seeds as snacks rather than a meal. These seeds are used in various recipes and can also be sprouted and eaten in salads.
Do sunflower seeds come from sunflowers?
Sunflower seeds come from sunflowers. When sunflowers cease to live and fall back, and their blooms become brown, farmers understand that the sunflower seeds are ready to be harvested. At that time, they start to reap the sunflower seeds from the fallen sunflowers.
Sunflower seeds come in varieties. Each type is unique as there are different monounsaturated, saturated, and polyunsaturated fats. Additionally, sunflower seeds have different colors and patterns on their body.
As the name suggests, sunflower seeds are the seeds of sunflowers. Therefore, sunflower seeds come from the various sunflowers grown in most gardens and farms. There are three types of sunflower seeds: linoleic, high oleic, and sunflower oil seeds.
Sunflower seeds are classified by the patterns visible on the seed shells. Solid black husks are black oil sunflower seeds, while striped sunflower seeds are confectionary sunflower seeds as they are eaten as snacks.
Black oil sunflower seeds crops are called oilseed sunflower crops and are pressed to extract the oil from the seeds.
Where do sunflower seeds come from?
Sunflower seeds come from the flower. After the sunflowers have expired, the flower is cut or pruned from the plant with some stem. The separated part is then kept in a container to catch plump and loose seeds.
The easiest part in the process of harvesting sunflower seeds is the cutting. Sunflowers last for six to twelve days, after which they cease to live. When they expire, farmers or gardeners cut the flower and reap the sunflower seeds present in the dark center of the flowers.
Most of the time, people are concerned about birds eating the blooms before they can be harvested. Birds love eating sunflower seeds as these contain good nutritional value and fats.
So, people cover the flowers with paper bags so that the birds cannot access the sunflower seeds.
Even though most people know the best time to harvest sunflower seeds, sometimes the flowers are not ready to be reaped. If the cut sunflower head is not fit to be harvested, it can be hung in a warm and dry area for some days.
Drying will help the seeds get loose and make the flowers fit to be harvested.
Are all sunflower seeds edible? What kind of sunflowers have edible seeds?
All sunflower seeds are edible. Sunflower plants do not have any poisonous parts, and there are no sunflowers that produce toxic seeds that are inedible. As a result, any part of the plant can be eaten without any worries of getting sick.
All sunflowers have edible seeds. Some of the common sunflowers that have edible seeds are listed below:
The American Giant sunflowers can reach 10-16 feet in height, and their flowers can be 10-20 times the size of dwarf sunflowers. These sunflowers provide edible seeds like ordinary sunflowers.
As the name suggests, the Skyscraper sunflowers reach about 12 feet in height as they develop, but their flowers are not as big as Russian Mammoth or American Giant sunflowers.
They provide edible seeds but getting access to them is difficult because of their length.
The distinguishing feature of Italian White sunflowers from ordinary sunflowers is their flowers. The Italian White sunflowers are white with a yellowish gradient to the center.
These flowers grow to be about 5-7 feet and provide edible seeds that can be harvested easily.
Unlike ordinary sunflowers, Chianti sunflowers have dark red petals and are about 4-5 feet tall. These beautiful red sunflowers are mainly known for their dark terracotta decoration.
Even though these provide sunflower seeds like all sunflowers, they are not used much.
Other types of sunflowers produce edible sunflower seeds as well. All sunflowers make edible seeds that can be collected and processed to eat.
How to grow sunflowers to get big seeds?
Growing sunflowers to get excellent yield can be effortless if you know the right tips. The tips given below will help:
The correct variety:
Not all varieties of sunflowers can provide a large number of sunflower seeds. So, it is essential to choose a type of sunflower that can. For example, Sunzilla is a giant sunflower that produces a lot of hybrid sunflower seeds.
They are developed to be a continuous and reliable source of sunflower seeds. Also, it has thick stems which can live through strong winds and can grow up to 16 feet.
Site and soil preparation:
Preparation of the site and soil is critical for the growth of sunflowers. Sunflowers need access to full sun for at least 8 hours for maximum yield. Additionally, they also require a lot of nutrients from the soil. So, fertilizers are a must.
How sunflowers seeds are sowed also plays an influential part in their growth. Sunflowers seeds should be planted directly in the garden, about an inch deep.
If the sunflower seeds are sowed in pots, their roots may have stunted growth, and the plant will no longer grow to be tall and big.
Caring for the sunflowers:
An essential process is watering and fertilizing. Water the plants regularly and add some liquid fertilizer to the water. In this way, the plant will receive fertilization, and the sunflowers will have access to great nutrients.
How do you harvest and roast seeds from a sunflower for eating?
Harvesting seeds from sunflowers is simple. Follow the steps below to reap the sunflower seeds from your sunflowers and roast them:
Cutting the flowers:
Cutting is the easiest part of the whole process. After the sunflowers have expired, gently cut the flower head and put it in a container. Putting it in a container will make sure that no seeds are lost.
Drying the cut flowers:
Drying the sunflowers after cutting them to obtain seeds is necessary. You can hang the flowers in a warm place for some hours. That will dry them enough and make the seeds easy to collect.
Collecting the seeds from flowers:
Once the flower heads are dried, hold them on top of a container. Gently brush the flower heads, and the container will catch all the seeds that fall from the flower. The container may also collect some petals, which you can remove later.
Soaking the collected seeds:
Once you have collected all the seeds from the sunflowers, soak the seeds in a salty water mixture. You can leave it overnight, and in case you do not want the kernels to taste salty, you can omit the salt.
Filtering and heating the seeds:
Slowly strain the sunflower seeds and filter out all the sunflower bits. Do not rinse the sunflower seeds as they will not serve the same purpose. Next, dry the seeds by laying them on a paper towel for several hours.
You can bake the seeds once they are dry. Preheat the oven beforehand and lay the dry seeds on a large baking tray. Then bake the seeds in the oven at 325°F until they are slightly brown and fragrant.
Adding some spice and flavoring:
As they become slightly brown and release a wonderful smell, take them out of the oven as they are ready to eat. You can sprinkle some spices and add olive oil to make them tastier. To store them for later, you can use airtight containers.
If you have followed all the steps correctly, you will have freshly roasted sunflower seeds to yourself. Enjoy the sunflower seeds snacks as they are very healthy and nutritious.
How many sunflower seeds can you get from one sunflower?
Each sunflower can produce about 1000-2000 seeds. Sunflowers grown in gardens may make a fewer number of pips relative to those in farms.
Sunflowers produce seeds for reproduction. These can be planted to grow into a new sunflower. Since sunflowers do not live for long, they process a lot of pips to give birth to sunflowers.
Sunflower seeds come from the dark brown part at the center of the sunflowers. Sunflowers produce about 1000-2000 seeds each. These seeds can grow into a new sunflower or be processed to eat. Most sunflower seeds harvesters extract the oil they hold, while some roast them to serve as snacks.