Helianthus 'Sunshine Daydream'
Common Name: sunflower 
Type: Herbaceous perennial
Family: Asteraceae
Zone: 4 to 8
Height: 5.00 to 6.00 feet
Spread: 2.00 to 4.00 feet
Bloom Time: July to August
Bloom Description: yellow
Sun: Full sun
Water: Medium
Maintenance: Low
Suggested Use: Naturalize
Flower: Showy, Good Cut
Attracts: Birds, Butterflies
Tolerate: Drought


Easily grown in average, medium to moist, well-drained soils in full sun. Established plants tolerate some light shade and drought. Plants generally tolerate a variety of soils including both clay and sandy loams as long as drainage is good. Plants also tolerate poor, rocky soils and urban conditions. Plant seed in the garden after last spring frost date. Best to site plants in locations sheltered from strong winds. Plant foliage often depreciates as the summer progresses. Removal of browned and tattered seed heads, foliage and plant stalks from the garden after bloom may improve the appearance of the landscape, but often becomes a great disappointment to local bird populations that love to feed on the seeds. If the plants must come down, consider saving the seed heads for feeding the birds in winter. Plants will self-sow in the garden.

Noteworthy Characteristics

Helianthus is a genus of about 60-70 species of annuals and perennials from North America, Central America, Peru and Chile. Commonly called sunflowers, they are grown for their bright, yellow (occasionally red) flowers.

Genus name comes from the Greek words helios meaning sun and anthos meaning flower.

Flower heads tend to follow the path of the sun each day from morning to night, hence the common name.

'Sunshine Daydream' is a perennial hybrid cultivar in the Garden Candy™ series. This double flowered sunflower was discovered as a sport of 'Capenoch Star'. It is often sold under the hybrid designation of Helianthus x multiflorus. The numerous double blooms are golden yellow in color with a hemispherical shape, somewhat resembling a dahlia. This hardy and drought tolerant selection has sturdy, dark colored stems and makes an excellent cut flower. Plants can reach up to 5-6' tall with a 2-4' spread.


Rust, leaf fungal spots and powdery mildew are somewhat common. Caterpillars and beetles often chew on the foliage. Watch for Sunflower Headclipping Weevil (Haplorhynchites aeneus) in July.


Small groups or mass. Borders, cottage gardens, bird gardens, wildflower, or native plant gardens. Good fresh cut flower.