uggabugga
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Mutant Sunflower?

has anyone seen a sunflower like this before?

instead of having one large head or multiple small heads, it has both!

it was grown from seeds that came from one of last season's normal-looking big-headed sunflowers.

[url=https://img75.imageshack.us/my.php?image=sunfloweraw2.png][img]https://img75.imageshack.us/img75/7492/sunfloweraw2.th.png[/img][/url]

click for larger image - the large head is near top center and the plant is about 14 feet tall.

opabinia51
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I wouldn't call this a mutant per se but, under different growing conditions; plants can do different things. It's a very complicated and interesting realm of biology called epigenetics. Also, you could have some hybrid seeds as well which could explain the difference but, I would think that it is some sort of epigenetic effect.

Beautiful sunflower by the way.

uggabugga
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thanks. i'd love to have more like it.

opabinia51
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Vegetative reproduction my friend.... vegetative reproduction.

The seeds from the plant, may have cross pollinated with some other sunflower in the vicinity so, you really never know what you'll get as far as genetics is concerned. And of course, the soil will play a role in what genes are expressed.

Anyway, vegetative reproduction means that you take a piece of the plant and grow a new plant from the piece and keep it going until next year. Might have to do this several times.

But, save some seeds as well! Recombinant DNA is the spice of life!

uggabugga
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vegetative reproduction- i wish. there's just no way i could keep it going thru the winter here. guess i'll just have to settle for seeds.
btw, 2 days after i took that picture it started leaning due to the weight of the head, so now it's at least 3 feet shorter.

opabinia51
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Hmmmm, yes. I definately didn't mean that saving the plant via vegetative means was going to be easy. You'd have to grow it inside and take cuttings to grow up before the initial plant(s) died and so on.

I would personally go with the seed method myself... and it sounds like you are also going to do that. :wink:

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Grey
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I just have to add... that sunflower is STUNNING!

I hope your seed-saving efforts work.

rutheo
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mine have done the same i have planted 5 sunflowers this year thinking they where going to be normal sunflowers. two of them have grown too over 14ft before dropping when the head got too big. the head is huge on both of them. then there is the mutant one he he that has a main head which i would say is normal sized and last time i counted had had about 17 small head the the most amazing sunflower i have ever seen. i am dreading have too de seed them i love them boo hoo. hopefully if i keep back some seeds they will be like that again.
i am visting my mum at the mo so when i get home i will add some photo's tell me what you think of them.

opabinia51
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Yes, I've been thinking about this and I really think that this is just the growing conditions that the sunflowers are growing in.

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