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Discover 41 of the Most Beautiful Sunflower Varieties

The common sunflower (Helianthus Annuus) is an annual and only one of about 75 Helianthus species native to North America. Most other species are perennials.

Helianthus is Greek for sunflower and is the botanical name for a genus in the Asteraceae family – plants with single-seed flowers. The family is also called the composite family, referring to the fact that the flowers are a composition of hundreds of miniature flowers.

Sunflowers – Varieties Groups

Hundreds of hybrids of the 75 main species in the Helianthus genus exist. Some sunflower hybrids are a product of crosses between Helianthus and other genera. 

Let’s create some primary groups to help readers better familiarize themselves with sunflower hybrids and types. Some sunflowers may fall into more than one group.

A field of bright yellow sunflowers under a clear blue sky.
Basking in the summer sun ☀️🌻A field of bright yellow sunflowers under a clear blue sky.
  • 2 Top Seed Producing Sunflowers with Bright Yellow Petals
  • 20 Wild Sunflower Species in the Helianthus Genus
  • 10 Sunflowers with Colored Flower Heads
  • 5 Favorite Dwarf Sunflower Varieties With Bright Yellow Flowers
  • 3 Sunflower Mixes to Try
  • The Non-Sunflower Sunflower – Tithonia rotundifolia

That totals 50 sunflower varieties for you to try. I include one variety as a bonus, called a sunflower, but it is not a Helianthus—read (or scroll) to the end to find out.

Once you have chosen the variety you want to grow, you must learn to grow sunflowers.

The Commercially Significant Sunflower Varieties

Sunflower (Helianthus annuus) is a lovely and adaptable flowering annual appropriately named. The enormous flower’s shape and yellow color are reminiscent of the sun, and flower heads face the sun during their early development; mature heads commonly face East.

Helianthus annuus, used in commercial operations, are hybrids of the same species of wild sunflowers, which initially had multiple flowering heads and tiny seeds. 

Developing a monocephalous plant with a single stem, an enormous flowering head and large seeds was a significant step in domesticating the classic sunflower with dark brown centers.

A photograph of a large commercial sunflower field, with rows of sunflowers stretching out as far as the eye can see. The sunflowers have large golden-yellow petals surrounding a dark center, and the leaves are a lush green color. The sun is shining down on the field, casting long shadows behind the sunflowers. The rows are perfectly aligned, creating a mesmerizing pattern of yellow and green.
A Golden Sea: Rows of commercial sunflowers standing tall in the sun.

While gardeners mostly use sunflowers as pest trap crops, pollinator and butterfly magnets, and ornamentals, commercial varieties focus on seed production. Sunflower seeds are categorized as an oil or a confection (non-oil) variety, each having its market. 

  • Oil seed is processed into vegetable oil or used as a meal in livestock feed. 
  • Most confection-type seed is sold as a snack, with or without the hull. Edible seeds have a distinct white stripe.

Two Top Seed-Producing Sunflowers with Bright Yellow Petals 

While the sunflower (Helianthus annuus), with its bright yellow petals, is known for its beauty worldwide, it is also a vital source of sustenance. Sunflower oil is a valuable and nutritious vegetable oil, and sunflower seeds are popular as a healthy, pleasant snack and nutritional ingredient in various dishes.

Explore the National Sunflower Association’s (NSA) website to learn more about the nutritious products growing sunflowers produce.

1. Oil-Seed: Nugrow N4H470 CLP

A hybrid Helianthus annuus (sunflower) plant with strong stalks and roots, developed for use on farms. The plant has large, vibrant green leaves and a thick stem that supports a bright yellow sunflower head. The hybrid plant has added resistance to downy mildew and improved weed control, making it an attractive option for farmers seeking a productive and healthy crop.
Helianthus annuus

This Helianthus annuus hybrid delivers an all-around win on the farm. With excellent agronomics, including solid stalks and roots, the added benefits of downy mildew resistance and improved weed control.

2. Confection Sunflowers: PANTHER DMR

A close-up photograph of a confection sunflower plant, showing its distinctive white-striped seeds in their thick hulls. These sunflowers are cultivated specifically for their seeds, which are used to produce in-shell snacks. The seeds are larger and have a thicker hull than those of oilseed sunflowers. The plant has broad green leaves and a tall stem, and the sunflower head is visible in the background.
Confection sunflower

Confection sunflowers are grown to produce seeds to fulfill the unique needs of processors for the in-shell snack market. Confection sunflower seed has a thicker hull than oilseed sunflower seed and has distinctive white stripes. 

Twenty Wild Sunflower Species in the Helianthus Genus

The 70 or more wild sunflower species are ecologically and genetically varied. The USDA keeps seed stocks of most wild sunflower species on hand, partly because they contain genetic material that can be exploited to improve cultivated sunflower types. 

A pest-resistant species, for example, may give genes that reduce insect damage in cultivated sunflowers. The sunflowers H. annuus and H. petiolaris have regularly bred, resulting in three new sunflower species that dwell on the desert floor, dunes, and salt marshes.

While many hybrids are infertile, other genetic modifications result in hybrids with additional traits, allowing the Helianthus genus to adapt to different environments.

Botanical nameCommon NameHeightHardiness
1Helianthus debilisBeach Sunflower2 to 4′8 to 11
2Helianthus angustifolius Swamp Sunflower4 to 8′5 to 9
3Helianthus atrorubensAppalachian Sunflower3 to 4′6 to 8
4Helianthus carnosusLakeside Sunflower2 to 3′8 to 11
5Helianthus decapetalusForest Sunflower3 to 5′4 to 9
6Helianthus divaricatusWoodland Sunflower5 to 7′3 to 9
7Helianthus giganteusGiant Sunflowers4 to 10′2 to 11
8Helianthus gracilentusSlender Sunflower2 to 7′5 to 11
9Helianthus laciniatusAlkali Sunflower3 to 5′6 to 11
10Helianthus maximilianiMaximilian Sunflower3 to 10′3 to 11
11Helianthus microcephalusSmall Woodland Sunflower4 to 6′4 to 8
12Helianthus neglectusNeglected Sunflower3 to 4′8 to 11
13Helianthus petiolarisPrairie Sunflower3 to 5′3 to 11
14Helianthus resinosusResinous Sunflower4 to 6′7 to 9
15Helianthus schweintizii Schweinitz’s Sunflowers6 -7′7 to 9
16Helianthus mollisAshy Sunflower2 to 4′4 to 9
17Helianthus occidentalisWestern Sunflower1 to 4′3 to 9
18Helianthus salicifoliusGraceful Sunflower8 to 10′4 to 9
19Helianthus tuberosusJerusalem Artichoke6 to 10′3 to 9
20Heliopsis helianthoidesFalse or Oxeye Sunflower3 to 6′3 to 9

3. Beach Sunflower (Helianthus debilis)

A close-up photo of a beach sunflower, a spreading perennial plant with small, sunflower-like flower heads that bloom every year. The flowers have 10 to 20 pale yellow petals that encircle a purplish-brown disk that is about half to an inch in diameter. The plant has green leaves that are visible in the background of the photo. The flower heads are the main focus of the image and are in sharp focus, with the petals and disk clearly visible.
The beach sunflower

The beach sunflower is a spreading perennial with lovely, tiny, sunflower-like flower heads that bloom annually. These spectacular flowers feature 10 to 20 pale yellow rays around a half to an-inch broad purplish-brown disk.

4. Swamp Sunflower (Helianthus angustifolius)

A low-maintenance pop of fall color is added to the landscape by swamp sunflowers. They are shorter than the renowned gigantic sunflowers but taller than Florida's beach sunflowers. The distinctive indigenous plants should be widely planted to keep the local pollinators content throughout the fall.
Swamp sunflowers

Swamp sunflowers add a low-maintenance splash of fall color to the garden. They are taller than Florida’s beach sunflowers but shorter than the famous enormous sunflowers. Mass plantings of these unusual indigenous will keep the neighborhood pollinators happy all fall.

5. Appalachian Sunflower (Helianthus atrorubens)

A photograph of Helianthus atrorubens, a plant with a tall stem and a cluster of bright yellow flowers at the top, standing in a natural setting. This plant grows naturally in forests with rocky, clay, or sandy soils, as well as along road banks. It thrives in open forest gardens, cottage gardens, and mixed perennial beds, and is known for attracting bees and butterflies. Woodland birds also collect the seeds of this plant. It is important to note that Helianthus atrorubens has a medium flammability rating.
Helianthus atrorubens

Helianthus atrorubens grows in forests with rocky, clay, or sandy soils and along road banks. It thrives in open forest gardens, cottage gardens, and mixed perennial beds, attracting bees and butterflies. Woodland birds collect the seed. This plant has a medium flammability rating.

6. Lakeside Sunflower (Helianthus carnosus)

A photograph of a Lakeside sunflower, a bright yellow perennial wildflower with multiple blooms growing on a single stem. The sunflowers are surrounded by lush green foliage, and the plant is set against the backdrop of a lake and marshland in Northeast Florida. The flower's center is dark and attracts a variety of pollinators, including butterflies and beetles, while birds consume the seeds. The bright colors of the sunflowers contrast with the greenery of the plant
Lakeside sunflower

Lakeside sunflower is a perennial wildflower that grows on northeast Florida’s open sunny borders of lakes and marshes. The bright yellow sunflowers attract a wide range of pollinators, butterflies, and beetles, and birds consume the seeds.

7. Forest Sunflower (Helianthus decapetalus)

A close-up photograph of a Forest Sunflower (Helianthus decapetalus) with ten bright yellow petals surrounding a dark center. This plant is a high-value wildlife plant that is native to eastern and central North America.
Forest Sunflower (Helianthus decapetalus)

As the name indicates, this is a ten-petalled flower. It is a high-value wildlife plant native to eastern and central North America. This plant prefers moist, loamy, well-drained soil in full sun to light shade.

8. Woodland Sunflower (Helianthus divaricatus)

The woodland sunflower, which grows 5 to 7 feet tall in rocky or sandy woodlands and dry open regions, is indigenous to eastern and central North America.
Woodland Sunflower

Woodland Sunflower is endemic to eastern and central North America, growing 5 to 7 feet tall in rocky or sandy forests and dry open areas. Woodland Sunflower grows well in medium, well-drained soils in partial shade. It is one of the few sunflowers that are deer resistant.

9. Giant Sunflowers (Helianthus giganteus)

An image of a Giant Sunflower plant, a perennial species that can grow up to 13 feet (4 m) tall. The plant has a thick stem, green leaves, and a large, round flower head with bright yellow petals surrounding a dark center. The Giant Sunflower is one of several wild sunflower species that could potentially offer disease resistance for commercial yellow sunflowers (Helianthus annuus).
Giant sunflowers

Giant sunflowers is a proper name as this perennial can grow to be 13 feet tall (4 m). This is one of several wild sunflowers species that may provide critical sources of disease resistance in commercial yellow sunflowers (Helianthus annuus). 

10. Slender Sunflowers (Helianthus gracilentus)

A slender sunflower plant standing 2 to 6 feet tall. The plant's green foliage remains fresh throughout the fall, even without summer water. The sunflower bears hundreds of 2-inch wide, bright blooms with a mild chocolate scent between May and October.
Slender sunflower

Slender sunflower grows 2 to 6 feet tall, and even with no summer water, their foliage remains a fresh green through the Fall. Between May and October, it will bear hundreds of cheery, 2-inch wide, bright blooms with a mild chocolate scent. 

11. Alkali Sunflowers (Helianthus laciniatus)

The alkali sunflower grows in dry, alkaline desert soils and can be found in the southwestern United States and north-central Mexico. It is relatively common in the Chihuahuan Desert. 

Helianthus laciniatus is a perennial that grows to about 7 feet tall (2 m). A single plant can produce up to nine flower heads.
The alkali sunflower

The alkali sunflower grows in dry, alkaline desert soils and can be found in the southwestern United States and north-central Mexico. It is relatively common in the Chihuahuan Desert. 

Helianthus laciniatus is a perennial that grows to about 7 feet tall (2 m). A single plant can produce up to nine flower heads. 

12. Maximilian Sunflowers (Helianthus maximiliani)

A photograph of Helianthus maximiliani, a species of sunflower commonly known as Maximilian sunflower. The plant has tall, slender stems with narrow leaves and produces multiple bright yellow flowers with dark centers. The flowers are arranged in a cluster at the top of the stem.
Helianthus maximiliani

Helianthus maximiliani is a prairie sunflower that loves damp, clay-like soil and full sun (may need staking). Maximilian sunflowers in bathwater are said to alleviate arthritis pain, and planting them near windows can help repel mosquitoes. 

13. Small Woodland Sunflowers (Helianthus microcephalus)

A photograph of a small woodland sunflower, a wildflower with bright yellow petals and a dark center, growing in its natural habitat. The plant has slender stems with narrow green leaves that alternate along the length of the stem. The background is blurred, indicating the natural environment of the flower.
Small woodland sunflower

Small woodland sunflower grows 4 to 6 feet tall. The yellow flowers are attractive in bunches and bloom for a long time. It proliferates in well-drained soil and tolerates moist to occasionally dry soil and full sun to partial shade.

14. Neglected Sunflowers (Helianthus neglectus)

Despite being included on the Rare Plants of Texas website, this species has later been discovered to be very common over practically the entire southern half of Lea County.
Neglected Sunflowers (Helianthus neglectus)

This species was listed on the Rare Plants of Texas site but has since been found relatively abundant across almost all of the southern half of Lea County. It grows on dunes and sandy soil.

15. Prairie Sunflowers (Helianthus petiolaris)

A photograph of Prairie Sunflowers, a native wildflower species commonly found in prairies and grasslands. The sunflowers have bright yellow petals surrounding a dark brown center, and the leaves are narrow and long with a green color. The flowers are growing on tall stalks and several of them are visible in the photograph, creating a beautiful and natural display.
Prairie Sunflowers

Prairie Sunflowers can form clumps resembling tiny shrubs; however, it is not uncommon to see single plants spread around. It is common along sandy soil or gravelly wayside in mid to late summer. According to some sources, the plant can grow up to 6 feet tall in full sun.

16. Resinous Sunflowers (Helianthus resinosus)

A photograph of Resinous Sunflowers (Helianthus resinosus), a species of sunflowers with resinous stems and leaves, and yellow flower heads. The flowers have brownish-red centers and are surrounded by golden-yellow petals. The background is blurred, putting the focus on the Resinous Sunflowers in the foreground.
Resinous Sunflowers (Helianthus resinosus)

Several southeastern states are home to the resinous sunflower. It can be found growing along roadsides and in pine woods. Each stem can reach a height of 8 feet and produce up to five heads. 

Each head contains 10 to 20 yellow ray petals and approximately 90 yellow disc blooms. It prefers full sun to moderate shade and average moisture in the soil.

17. Schweinitz’s Sunflowers (Helianthus schweintizii) 

A photograph of Schweinitz's sunflower, a type of wild sunflower native to the southeastern United States. The sunflower has bright yellow petals surrounding a dark center, and the leaves are a green-gray color. The plant is growing in a natural environment, with other wildflowers and plants visible in the background.
Schweinitz’s sunflower

Schweinitz’s sunflower may be found in the clay soils of woodlands and forest openings but is listed as an endangered species by federal and North Carolina state agencies. 

This plant is one of the rarest sunflower species in the United States and is not recommended for home landscapes.

18. Ashy Sunflowers (Helianthus mollis)

A photograph of Ashy Sunflowers (Helianthus mollis), featuring single plants in bloom. The flowers have grayish-green leaves and pale yellow petals surrounding a dark center. The plants are growing in a natural setting, with a blurred background of green foliage.
Ashy Sunflowers (Helianthus mollis)

Helianthus mollis, commonly called ashy sunflower, typically grows to 2 to 4 feet tall. It is quickly grown in average, well-drained soils in full sun. It is drought tolerant.

19. Western Sunflowers (Helianthus occidentalis)

A photograph of Western Sunflowers (Helianthus occidentalis), a type of sunflower native to western North America. The sunflowers have bright yellow petals surrounding a dark center and the leaves are long and narrow. The flowers are growing in their natural habitat, with the blue sky and green vegetation in the background.
Western Sunflowers (Helianthus occidentalis)

Tolerates various soil conditions, including poor sandy soil, loams, and clays. Plants should be divided every 3-4 years to limit the spread and preserve plant vigor. Western sunflower is drought tolerant. 

20. Graceful Sunflowers (Helianthus salicifolius)

A photograph of Helianthus salicifolius, commonly known as graceful sunflowers. The sunflowers have slender stems and leaves, and yellow petals surrounding a dark center. The background is blurred, allowing the focus to remain on the sunflowers.
Graceful Sunflowers (Helianthus salicifolius)

Easily cultivated in full sun on average, medium, well-drained soil. Tolerates various soils. Plants planted in partial shade grow tall but have fewer blooms. Divide every 3 to 4 years to preserve vigor and control the spread.

21. Jerusalem Artichoke (Helianthus tuberosus)

A close-up photograph of a single Jerusalem artichoke flower, set against a dark background. The flower has a yellow center with many small, tubular petals radiating outwards. The stem of the flower is green and sturdy, with green leaves visible in the background. The Jerusalem artichoke plant is a member of the sunflower family and is cultivated for its edible tubers.
Jerusalem Artichoke (Helianthus tuberosus)

This plant is cultivated for its attractive late summer to fall sunflowers and in food gardens for its knobby edible tubers produced below ground on white rhizomes. Tubers are said to have an artichoke-like flavor.

22. False Sunflowers (Heliopsis helianthoides)

A photograph of False Sunflowers (Heliopsis helianthoides), a plant species that belongs to the Asteraceae family. The False Sunflowers have large yellow petals surrounding a dark center, and the leaves are a bright green color. The plant is in full bloom, and the image captures the intricate details of the flower, including its texture and shape.
False Sunflowers (Heliopsis helianthoides)

Plants in the genus Heliopsis resemble and are closely related to plants in the genus Helianthus, the actual sunflower. Heliopsis is sometimes known as the fake sunflower.

Heliopsis helianthoides, sometimes known as oxeye sunflower, is a short-lived, upright, clump-forming, sunflower-like perennial endemic to eastern and central North America. It can reach 3 to 4 feet tall in full sun.

10 Sunflowers with Colored Flower Heads

Dwarf varieties are sunflowers shorter than 48 inches (4 feet tall). When grown in containers, dwarf varieties are generally more compact than those grown in garden beds. Flower bed-grown dwarf sunflowers tend to be a little taller.

The table below lists my favorite colored sunflowers—from the shortest to the tallest. The list of ten sunflowers includes nine that are classified as dwarf sunflowers.

23. Gaillardia Dwarf Sunflowers

A photograph of Gaillardia Dwarf Sunflowers, a type of sunflower plant. The image shows a group of short, compact sunflowers with red and yellow petals surrounding a brown center. The sunflowers are growing in a garden or a natural setting, and the background may include other plants, trees, or natural elements.
Gaillardia Dwarf Sunflowers

Height: 12 to 16 inches

Even in its first year, the Arizona Sun Gaillardia, popularly known as Blanket Flowers, produces multiple flowers. It develops a low, compact mound covered in daisy-like flowers from June until September. Arizona Sun, an All-American and Fleuroselect Gold Medal winner, will stand out in your garden. Check out NatureHills for seeds.

24. Sundance Kid Dwarf Sunflowers

A photograph of a single Sundance Kid Dwarf Sunflower in bloom, showing a small sunflower with bright yellow petals surrounding a dark center. The sunflower is growing on a short stem and has small green leaves. The background is blurry, but appears to be a garden or outdoor area.
Sundance Kid Dwarf Sunflowers

Height: 12 to 24 inches

Sundance Kid dwarf sunflower was established in a Sunflowers Selections breeding program years ago as one of the earliest dwarf sunflower varieties offering early flowering, semi-double petal and bicolor yellow and red with a brown center. 

Sundance Kid sunflowers flower fast, growing to around knee height, and continue to flower longer than most sunflowers.

Sundance kid flowers are ideal for small bouquets or adding a burst of color to a border in your garden. Reminder: Add Sundance kid sunflowers to your list. 

25. Solsation® Flame Dwarf Sunflower

A close-up photograph of a single Sundance Kid dwarf sunflower in full bloom, with bright yellow petals surrounding a dark center. The small sunflower plant stands at a short height and has green leaves visible in the background. The details of the petals, center and leaves are clearly visible in the image.
Solsation® Flame Dwarf Sunflower

Height: 18 inches

This dwarf sunflower variety is designed to bring the sunshine indoors and outdoors, whether used in flower arrangements, containers, baskets, or garden beds. Sunsation® Flame is a striking yellow/red flamy variety that brings you the ultimate Indian summer feeling well into fall.

26. Florenza Dwarf Sunflower

A photograph of a Florenza Dwarf Sunflower. The sunflower is small in size, with a single stem and a bright yellow flower head with dark center disk. The petals are arranged in a circular pattern around the center disk, and the stem and leaves are green.
Florenza Dwarf Sunflower

Height: 15 – 30 inches

Florenza offers a unique color combination and mild chocolate fragrance with heads that don’t droop. The plants have limited small leaves, accentuating the multiple flowers. Get it from Johnny’s Seeds.

27. Ms. Mars Dwarf Sunflower

A photograph of a Ms. Mars dwarf sunflower, showing its unique features such as the small size of the plant, its stem, and leaves, and the bright yellow petals that surround the dark center of the flower. The background is blurred, highlighting the details of the sunflower plant.
Ms. Mars Dwarf Sunflower

Height: 20 to 30 inches

That is a stunning dwarf sunflower variety brought to you by Burpee. The merlot-colored ray petals of this low-growing, robustly branched, flame-type, 20 to 30 inches tall sunflower change to a reddish-pink. It needs full sun to thrive.

28. Double Dandy Dwarf Sunflowers

A photograph or image of Double Dandy Dwarf Sunflowers.
Double Dandy Dwarf Sunflowers

Height: 24 inches

Double Dandy, brought to you by Garden Stars, is a dwarf sunflower variety with very early maturity, abundant flowering, and a unique semi-double petal-type with a mauve hue that is unlike any other sunflower. Great for a cutting garden.

29. Firecracker Dwarf Sunflowers

Alternative text: A photograph of Firecracker Dwarf Sunflowers, a type of sunflower that grows to a compact size and features bright yellow and red petals surrounding a dark center. The flowers are in focus and occupy most of the frame, with the leaves and stems visible in the background. The flowers are growing in a garden or pot, and there may be other plants or objects in the background.
Firecracker Dwarf Sunflowers

Height: 24 to 36 inches

Brought to you by Johnny’s Seeds, Firecracker sunflowers are a branched dwarf sunflower variety with red and gold flowers. This small plant produces a mass of vivid, bicolored flowers that range in size from 4 to 6 inches and look fantastic in containers.

30. Tiger Eye Dwarf Sunflowers

A close-up photograph of Tiger Eye Dwarf Sunflowers, a variety of sunflowers with dark centers and golden-yellow petals. The sunflowers are small in size and grow in a bushy formation. The leaves are a vibrant green color and are visible in the background.
Tiger Eye Dwarf Sunflowers

Height: 30 inches

The first time I saw this plant, the first thing than came to mind was the flower-power-tied-dyed days. Burpee’s gleaming new bicolor beauties are perfect for the garden, vase, happy bees, butterflies, and other pollinators. Each plant can produce up to eight 5-inch flowers. Ensure the Tiger Eye gets full sun.

31. Little Becka Dwarf Sunflowers

A photograph of Little Becka Dwarf Sunflowers, a variety of sunflower that is smaller in size compared to traditional sunflowers. The sunflowers have yellow petals surrounding a dark center, and the leaves are a deep green color. The background of the image is blurred, but it appears to be a garden or field.
Little Becka Dwarf Sunflowers

Height: 36 – 40 inches

Becka sunflowers are 3-foot-tall compact charmer dazzles with a profusion of 6-inch flowers with bright yellow halos, orange petals, and golden picotees. Little Becka sunflowers give a splash of color to flower arrangements, borders or balconies. Little Becka sunflowers need well-drained soil and full sun.

32. Strawberry Blonde Sunflower

A photograph of a Strawberry Blonde Sunflower. The sunflower has light pink and orange petals surrounding a dark center, with a few small seeds visible in the center. The stem and leaves are green and healthy-looking. The background is blurred, making the sunflower the focal point of the image.
Strawberry Blonde Sunflower

Height: 5 to 6 feet

Tall sunflowers can be colorful, too. Johnny’s Seeds Strawberry blonde has ruby-red flowers with petals that stay put. The petals are burgundy or pink, with lemony tips and a dark center. Branching plants have robust side stems 18 to 24 inches long for cut flowers. 

It is recommended to pinch branching variety to stimulate branching and longer stems. Sow for a continuous crop every 2-3 weeks, or plant various types.

5 Dwarf Sunflowers With Bright Yellow Flowers

33. Elf Sunflower

A photograph of an Elf Sunflower. The Elf Sunflower is a small variety of sunflower with vibrant yellow petals and a dark center. The plant has green leaves that are narrow and elongated. The photograph shows the Elf Sunflower in full bloom, with the bright petals forming a circular shape around the center of the flower. The background is blurred, emphasizing the beauty of the Elf Sunflower in the foreground.

Regenerate response
Elf Sunflower

Elf sunflowers are Burpee’s shortest sunflower, standing only 14 to 16 inches tall! It blooms throughout the growing season in full sun. These dwarf sunflowers make excellent garden companions for garden gnomes, clay frogs, and ceramic salamanders. 

34. Teddy Bear Sunflower

A photograph of a Teddy Bear sunflower, a unique variety of sunflower that has fluffy, round flower heads that resemble teddy bear faces. The sunflower has bright yellow petals and a dark center, and the stem is green and sturdy. The background is blurred, highlighting the Teddy Bear sunflower in the foreground.
Teddy Bear Sunflower

Teddy Bear is a versatile sunflower for fields or containers. Like the other dwarfs, the final height depends on the size of the container. Expect 8- to 12-inch-tall plants from teddy bear seeds directly sown in 4-inch pots and plants 35 to 42 inches tall if planted in the garden.

A teddy bear dwarf sunflower is unlike any other and offers yellow, shaggy blooms. The teddy bear name suits them, and they’re a favorite with children (and adults). Check out Johnny’s Seeds 

35. Suntastic Yellow

A photograph of a Suntastic Yellow sunflower. The sunflower has bright yellow petals that radiate out from its dark center. The stem is long and green, with small leaves growing off of it. The background is blurred, with no discernible objects or shapes.
Suntastic Yellow

Award-winning dwarf sunflower that is ideal for pots and containers. Suntastic Yellow is a well-branched dwarf annual with a profusion of big blooming up to 6 inches in diameter (15 cm), decorated with dazzling golden petals and dark-brown centers. Ensure the sunny smile of Suntastic yellow gets full sun.

36. Sunbright Supreme Sunflowers

Alternative text: A photograph of Sunbright Supreme Sunflowers, a variety of sunflowers known for their vibrant and large golden-yellow petals surrounding a dark center. The sunflowers are standing tall and proud, with their sturdy green stems and leaves visible beneath the bright yellow petals. The image showcases the beauty and unique characteristics of the Sunbright Supreme Sunflowers.
Sunbright Supreme Sunflowers

The Johnny’s Seeds Supreme blooms more quickly than the original Sunbright and has more rounded petals and shorter, more rigid stems with reduced lower leaves, making this an excellent variety for bouquet work. 

The heads are 4 to 6 inches, and this single-stem plant grows 5 to 6 feet tall and needs full sun.

37. Sunspot Sunflowers

A photograph of Sunspot Sunflowers, a variety of sunflowers with round yellow petals and a dark center, standing tall on long green stems against a blue sky background.
Sunspot Sunflowers

Park Seed has an 18 inches tall sunflower packed with seeds in a 10-inch head. Quite spectacular. Ensure it is in a sunny spot and gets direct sunlight.

Three Sunflowers Mixes to Try

38. Sunforest Mix Sunflowers

A package of Sunforest Mix sunflower seeds, with a label indicating the type of seeds contained inside. The seeds are various sizes and shapes, and have a mixture of colors including shades of yellow, orange, and red. The package is on a flat surface, and there are no other objects in the frame.
Sunforest Mix Sunflowers

Plant a fast-growing sunflower forest where your kids can frolic—so plant lots. Burpee’s Sunforest mix sunflowers blend three tall and sturdy varieties to create an enchanted natural playground. 

39. Fantasia Mixture Sunflowers

A package of Fantasia Mixture sunflower seeds lying on a flat surface. The seeds are a mix of different varieties and sizes, and the packaging features a picture of colorful sunflowers in bloom. The brand name and product name, "Fantasia Mixture Sunflowers," are clearly visible on the package.
Fantasia Mixture Sunflowers

What could be better than a five feet tall, branching stem plant with five-inch pollen-free blooms? Pine Tree’s blend has the broadest color range conceivable, ranging from white, lemon, and yellow to a very dark red, with several bi-colors in between. 

40. Summer Breeze Mix

"Summer Breeze Mix," a type of seed mix that may contain various types of flower seeds, specifically tailored to grow in the summer season. The packaging may display images of different flowers or plants, indicating the variety included in the mix.
Summer Breeze Mix

Johnny’s Seeds offers a branching sunflower mix that’s simple to grow. Varieties are chosen for color harmony and matching plant height and bloom period ranges. 

The Non-Sunflower Sunflower – Tithonia rotundifolia

A photograph of Tithonia rotundifolia, commonly known as the "Non-Sunflower Sunflower". The plant has bright orange petals arranged in a circular pattern around a dark center. The leaves are a deep green color and have a rough texture. The plant is in full bloom and is set against a green background.
The Non-Sunflower Sunflower – Tithonia rotundifolia

Tithonia Fiesta del Sol, sometimes known as the Mexican sunflower, is not a sunflower. It is a plant endemic to Mexico and Central America and a robust annual that can grow 4 to 6 feet tall in a single season.

Tithonia Fiesta del Sol blooms from midsummer to fall, offering showy sunflowers up to 3 inches wide with orange to orange-red rays and orange-yellow disks bloom with a dark brown center. It has multiple stems. 

What’s in a Name?

Tithonus, a young man adored by Aurora, the dawn goddess, inspired the name of the genus. Rotundifolia refers to round-leaved plants.

In Summary

Congratulations, you now have a better understanding of the various sunflower varieties that you can grow in your garden! Choosing suitable sunflower varieties can add a burst of color and cheer to your outdoor space. Don’t miss out on future gardening tips and tricks – sign up for our newsletter using the form below and never miss an update!