Helianthus is the scientific name for sunflowers. Sunflowers are large yellow flower clusters that grow on annual or perennial broadleaved plants. The centres of the flowers hold countless edible seeds. Perennial helianthus is available in many varieties.
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Helianthus augustifolus, also known as swamp sunflower, grows to a mature height of 6 feet and has 3- to 6-inch-long, rough foliage. The yellow flowers are 2 to 3 inches in diameter and bloom from late summer to fall.
Downy sunflower plants have fuzzy, grey-green foliage and bloom with 3- to 4-inch wide, light yellow flowers between July and October. The flowers of the Helianthus mollis are very attractive to butterflies.
Slender sunflower is among the late-blooming helianthus varieties. Also known as Helianthus gracilientus, the plant has slender stems and blooms profusely with 2-inch wide, yellow, daisy-like flowers from May to October.
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