How to dry a sunflower

The method to dry a sunflower varies according to the use that we want to give it

What is it about sunflowers that makes them so popular? They are beautiful and very cheerful flowers that add a touch of color to any home. In addition, they are the vegetables from which the pipas are extracted, some delicious edible salty seeds that we all know. The large size of sunflowers, their shape and their characteristic yellow color remind us of the sun, summer and heat. Therefore it is not surprising that they are one of the favorite flowers. In order to keep them longer or collect their seeds to eat them, there is a fairly simple process. In this article we will explain how to dry a sunflower, either to use it as a decorative element or to make our own pipes.

If you are growing sunflowers and want to harvest their seeds to eat them later, I recommend that you keep reading. We will explain step by step how to dry a sunflower to extract its seeds and how to make them edible, transforming them into the famous salty sunflower seeds. In the event that you want to dry the entire flower of the sunflower to decorate your home, do not worry, because we will also comment on how to carry out this task step by step. Also, We will talk about the time it takes for these precious flowers to dry.

How do you dry the sunflower?

To dry a sunflower you have to wait until it has matured

Apart from being extremely beautiful, sunflowers stand out a lot for their seeds. Who doesn't like pipes? Then we will explain step by step how to dry a sunflower to extract the seeds and later to be able to eat them:

  1. Prepare the sunflowers: It is important to wait for these plants to reach maturity before collecting the seeds. The back of the flowers should take on a yellowish-brown hue. Ideally, wait until the heads of these vegetables start to fall off and lose their petals.
  2. Wrap the sunflower heads: With a paper bag or cheesecloth we must wrap the flowers and tie them with thread. This way we will protect the seeds and make sure we get the most out of them.
  3. Cut the stems: When it's time to harvest the sunflowers, we must always cut the stems diagonally and to a length of between 15 and 30 centimeters to be able to dry the flowers well.
  4. Hang the sunflowers: To help them dry faster, it is best to hang them upside down in a dry, dark place, at least until the head has completely turned brown.
  5. Extract the seeds: Once the sunflowers are dry, it's time to extract the seeds. We can do this with our fingers, a fork or a stiff brush, for example.
  6. Prepare the seeds for consumption: Mix 120 grams of salt in 3,8 liters of water. Clean the seeds so that there are no vegetable remains and put them in the previous mixture. Let soak for at least eight hours. Then, spread the seeds in a pan and put them in the oven at 218°C for about five hours, until dry.
Properties and cultivation of sunflower seeds
Related article:
Properties and cultivation of sunflower seeds

Now that we have made our own pipes, how do we preserve them? It is best to put them in an airtight container. If we also put them in the freezer, they can be kept for up to a year. After our first attempt, we can experiment and make them more to our liking, altering the mix that we have discussed in point six.

How to preserve sunflower flowers?

In case we want to know how to dry a sunflower to use it as a decorative element in our home, the procedure is obviously different. Let's see how to do it step by step:

  1. Collect the sunflowers: When choosing the sunflowers that we want to dry, it is essential that they are partially open. Thus, the seeds have not yet fully developed and we will prevent them from falling after the drying process. The most recommended thing is that the sunflowers are medium or small in size.
  2. Cut the flowers: When it comes to cutting the flowers, we must leave a stem with a length of approximately six inches. Then we have to remove all the dead leaves that can be found around the head of the sunflower.
  3. Hang the sunflowers: To hang these flowers we can tie them with dental floss or a rope. Up to three specimens can be put together, but it is preferable that the heads of the sunflowers do not touch each other. It is essential to place them in a dry and dark place, such as a closet. Of course, they must have some space, that is, without touching anything around them so that they can dry properly.
  4. Wait for them to dry: After hanging them we must wait until they have dried completely. Then it's time to get them out of the closet, or wherever they are, and cut the thread.
  5. Spray with hairspray: The best trick to preserve both the shape and color of dried flowers is to spray them with a little hairspray. In this way they will be more protected, increasing their durability.

Another option for point three would be place the sunflowers in a vase instead of hanging them. In this way, the petals of the same will end up arching. We choose the option that is, it is essential to place the flowers in a dry and dark place for this process. If you want to know more methods to dry natural flowers, give here.

How long does it take to dry a sunflower?

Sunflowers take about two weeks to dry

We already know how to dry a sunflower, but how long does this process take? Whether to make pipes or to decorate our home with these beautiful flowers, the time they usually take to dry is usually about two weeks, although they can be three. This mainly depends on the size of the sunflower. Remember that it is very important to hang the flowers in a dark and dry room so that they can dry properly.

It can be said that the dried flowers They do not tolerate direct sun very well. So we must place the dried sunflowers in a place in the house where they are not directly exposed to the sun's rays. In this way we will be able to considerably lengthen its durability and its beautiful appearance.

Do you dare to make your own pipes or decorate your home with dried sunflowers? If so, leave us your experiences in the comments.

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