Saluting the Sun

The sunflowers in Rollins College’s urban garden are in full bloom this summer.

(Photo by Scott Cook) (Photo by Scott Cook)

In just weeks, the student-run urban garden at Rollins will be filled with corn, tomatoes, and lettuce. But right now the sunflowers are commanding all the attention—and preparing the soil—with their tall stature and cheerful blooms.

(Photo by Scott Cook) (Photo by Scott Cook)

Sunflowers need at least six hours of full sun each day, making the market garden a perfect home. They’re able to maximize their absorption of solar radiation for photosynthesis by turning their blooms to follow the sun, a trait called heliotropism.

(Photo by Scott Cook) (Photo by Scott Cook)

The sunflowers should be in bloom at Rollins through the fall. When you visit the urban garden, take a close look at the center of the blooms—they’re actually made up many tiny flowers—nearly 2,000 of them.