My photo
I ran away from teaching to the country to grow veggies. There are also some chooks and a pair of troublesome goats who were so much trouble they had to go! My simple green life isn't always as simple or as green as I'd like...but I keep trying!

Thursday, April 14, 2011


Important announcement

I have never grown sunflowers before 
and I have fallen head of heals 
for these fascinating, statuesque and generous beauties.  

I am not alone, sunflowers were the earthly symbols of solar dieties with the Aztecs and the Incas.
When they were introduced into Spain in the 16th Century, their cultivation was banned because of their links to war and religion in South America. 

Sunflowers have also stirred the passion of artists. 
Who among us is not familiar with Van Gogh's sunflowers 
that he painted to decorate his friend, Gaugin' room?    

In return Gauguin painted a portrait of Vincent painting the sunflowers. 

Poet William Blake wrote admiringly and from Alan Ginsberg
(just the last part)

We're not our skin of grime, we're not our dread
bleak dusty imageless locomotive, we're all
beautiful golden sunflowers inside, we're bles-
sed by our own seed & golden hairy naked ac-
complishment-bodies growing into mad black
formal sunflowers in the sunset, spied on by our
eyes under the shadow of the mad locomotive
riverbank sunset Frisco hilly tincan evening sit-
down vision. 

They have fascinated mathematicians and are an example of  Fibonacci's Golden Ratio.  

Sunflowers are a native of Central America.
They been domesticated for about 4500 years. 
Some Native American groups planted them on the north side of their gardens as the 'fourth sister' along with pumpkins, corn and beans.
They are actually 1 - 2000 individual flowers held in a receptacle base.
Sunflowers extract toxic substances from the soil - lead, arsenic, uranium.
They were used to extract cesium-137 and strontium-90 from a nearby pond after the Chernobyl disaster.
A single seed can produce between 1 and 2 thousand seeds.

All I know is that every day 
they stood in my garden they made me smile   

I promise to love, honour and cultivate sunflowers till death do us part.
Even when my own locomotive is bleak, dusty and imageless, 
when people no longer notice me as I shuffle, 
when my naked accomplished body 
grows into a mad black formal sunflower in the sunset of my life, 
I will carry the seeds of my love in my pocket 
and plant them guerilla style wherever I go
 leaving a trail of sunshine in my wake. 


  1. Stunning pics!
    We love a bit of sunflower action too. There is something so optimistic about them.

  2. I love sunflowers! And the love their seeds...and there is nothing cuter than seeing fluffy chook bums all bent busily over a sunflower head! Lovely pics :)

  3. Hello Hazel!

    It's great to hear from you.

    I am glad you found the Walkabouter's blog. It's a great way to keep in touch with all our past and current members....and hopefully entice you to join us on some walks in the future.

    If you have some spare time in between all your goings on at the farm, you might like to join us in the 'big smoke' later in April for a walk along Merri Creek.

    It would be great to see you and I am sure you will enjoy catching up with some familiar faces.

    p.s. love your blog and seeing what you have been getting up to!

  4. My dear friend Michailey and I try to live just like this....

    Live life like a Sunflower!
    Reach for the sky~
    Stay open~
    Bend with the breeze~
    Bloom where you are planted~
    Grow from the rain~
    Turn your face to the sun~

  5. I love this post Hazel. I have seen some of Van Gogh's paintings of sunflowers in real life they and are truly amazing....just like the real life plants themselves. I will be sowing some seeds next spring in my garden and maybe a few other places as well.

  6. Hazel where do you get the seeds for the Queen of Hearts Sunflower?

  7. Ooo Hazel, part of your description made me think of you - fascinating and statuesque and a generous beauty :)

    Your photos are just lovely and the heart made me smile...

  8. Lovely photos Hazel! There's always a quirky contest here for whoever grows the tallest sunflower, measured at the end of the season. You might be up for a personal challenge on growing a gigantic one, it's fun! :-)

  9. Are your chooks or Brewster eyeing the sunflower seeds at the moment?

  10. I'm with you - sunflowers are amazing. I'm hoping to have success with three different types this summer. I've bought ones called 'Teddy Bear' I can't wait to see what they turn out like!

  11. Great post and photos too Hazel. I'm glad to hear that you're in love. Just think - all they need is water and they're happy. Sounds pretty low maintenance to me.

  12. Ah the beauty and the wonder, you can't beat a good set of fractals!

  13. Sunflowers are beautiful flowers aren't they? You have captured some lovely shots there.

    On our journey home from Victoria on Wednesday, we passed a truck with Hazel Dene written on the side, any relation of yours lol? It made me smile...

    Happy gardening,


  14. For a real treat, plant some blue morning glories along with the sunflowers and they'll climb the stalks. The two colors together are gorgeous.


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