On Sep 24, 2011, Mima56 from Thayer, MO (Zone 6a) wrote:
Planted tithonia for the first time in a newly constructed butterfly garden. I must have added too much nitrogen (cottonseed meal), because all the plants did was GROW! They finally had a very flowers on the very top, but on 7-8 foot plants, they sure were hard to see! Finally, wind and rain toppled them. I will definitely plant these again but will put them in an older bed without as much fertilizer. I am curious if these should be pinched back early in the season.
I grew a row of Yellow Mammoth Sunflowers at 7'-8' in the backrow, Orange Mexican Daisies at 3'-4' in the middle row, a row of Blue Daze just in front of the Daisies, at about 12"-18", and cascading in front of the Blue Daze was Dark Green Creeping Rosemary with its little blue flowers spilling over the natural rock wall. It looked beautiful and decorated the view right outside my daughters bedroom window with color and lots of butterflies...ahhh....memories....
On Jul 30, 2010, ikrivack from Hillsborough, NC wrote:
I have loved and grown this plant for years in NC (durham area), yes it droops in the heat of the midday, but I never water it and it thrives, and blooms like crazy. I love all the butterflies and humming birds it attracts. For the first time ever, it is not blooming, even though it is healthy and almost 6 ft tall, and I have been so dissappointed. I had to write, when the first search on line about this non blooming year, brought me to someone else in NC who has the same problem, and my son happens to be named Ivan.
On Jul 24, 2010, ivansmom from Franklin, NC wrote:
I planted these seeds in late spring. They are now almost seven feet tall and I still see no buds. They are healthy and in full sun. Their leaves do not have a fuzzy texture but like the ones in the pictures. Are these just extra tall? Thanks.
On Jun 6, 2010, gary1173 from Sugar Land, TX wrote:
I purchased one of these as a seedling from a plant sale at the Houston Museum of Natural Science's butterfly exhibit. I was told it was a sunflower which would attract butterflies to my garden. It does attract butterflies, but I was very pleasantly surprised to find that it isn't at all like the sunflowers I was expecting. The plant is now about 5 feet tall, with dozens of 3 inch diameter, bright orange, zinnia-like blooms. The color really brightens up my garden. I love this flower.
On Nov 30, 2009, willow_glad from Gladbrook, IA wrote:
This plant was a hardy delight. I started it indoors and neglected it until the last minute before transplanting it outdoors. It developed into a lovely bush. I saved the seeds (a picky project) and am looking forward to many plants next year.
I live across from two parks that are filled with hungry deer so finding a care free plant that is covered with bright flowers all summer long is a real blessing! I will definitely get more for next year-- this grows in full sun, moderate water, four feet tall and wide, and was covered in bright orange flowers all summer and fall.
On Aug 22, 2009, dianne99 from Brookville, KS (Zone 5b) wrote:
I've grown "torch" from seed 2 years now, and they self-sowed everywhere but the driest site of 3 in full sun. They are worth watering, but I would not call them drought tolerant--I would call them more of a drought meter! They wilt first at over 85 until the sun goes down unless they get approx. 3/4" of water every 3-4 days in well mulched beds, even. They get as tall as the soil is good (8' or more) and bloom until frost. If they are not blooming by the 1st week in Aug. (Z5b), I would look into whether my soil has too much nitrogen, esp. if they're tall and very green but unblooming. Also low phosphorus. Mine have nice buds today June 30. They should be 4-5' apart in good soil. Take warm water out to dunk them in immediately, rinse and cut stems and change water daily, and they will last over a week in vases. If you don't like orange, grow some of these with purple basil or something blue, and I bet you'll like these! I have many deer, rabbits, moles and squirrels and they have never touched it--but they all have different tastes.
On Jul 16, 2009, mjsponies from DeLand/Deleon Springs, FL (Zone 8b) wrote:
this is probably the most popular flower in our Butterfly garden.
Gotta keep it dead headed...or it can get scraggly looking. Drought tolerant, Sun tolerant and humidity tolerant. It's a keeper for us.
On Jun 15, 2009, sukai from San Antonio Guadalupe Mexico wrote:
I wonder if anyone knows exactly where it is from in Mexico? (Tithonia rotundiflora, that is). We are living about an hour south of Toluca and I see something in the hillsides here that sure looks like Tith rotu, but it comes in a much wider variety of colors. So far the seeds collected last year in about Oct. don't seem viable, but my "Torch" seeds grow well, although don't seem to like clay soils very much.
On Nov 25, 2008, CurtisJones from Longmont, CO wrote:
From your friends at Botanical Interests: Annual. Blooms late summer to first fall frost. 3'- 5' tall. Full sun. Unabashedly brilliant orange 3" wide daisy-like flowers on long stems. The 'Torch' flowers are as hot & fiery as the August sunshine! A genuine heat-lover, this Mexican Sunflower sets the dog days of summer ablaze with its sizzling orange daisies. A large outstanding plant for the back of the border. Plant a row of Mexican Sunflowers for a quick temporary privacy screen while waiting for a new landscape to fill in. Attracts butterflies, especially the elegant Swallow Tails. Also tolerates infertile soil, drought, and neglect. For best results, remove spent flowers and stake if necessary. Looks lovely when paired with a purple grass for contrast. Easy to grow from seed - a good choice for new gardeners and children.
On Jul 26, 2008, BennysPlace from Beverly Hills, CA wrote:
I live in Tucson Arizona and this plant started growing as a volunteer. The soil where it started was the hard nasty clay with no amendments. This area does stay wet because I have a cassia in the same area that gets watered daily. As long as it received plenty of water, it grew quickly and provided several blooms.
On Feb 11, 2007, SandyRN from Blackwood, NJ (Zone 7a) wrote:
In summer 2005, I planted it in partial shade and was not impressed. In 2006, I gave it another shot in full sun and average soil. All I can say is WOW! It's a butterfly magnet at over 6 ft tall and covered with spectacular deep orange blooms. I deadheaded spent blooms to ensure more, but I don't know what would have happened if I didn't. People walking by always stopped to look. Thrived in the hot, dry conditions. I never once watered it. Large enough to be a temporary hedge or barrier. Very fast growing
On Aug 17, 2006, BDale60 from Warren, PA (Zone 5a) wrote:
Such a nice addition to the garden. My wife took one of these to the local county fair and won first prize in the sunflower class. I agree they make nice cut flowers in general although occasionally a few of them wilt and flop over in the vase (perhaps cut too late in their bloom?). We'll grow these again.
On Jun 13, 2006, Ed_in_Oregon from Hillsboro, OR wrote:
Mine grow great in Oregon. I started some in my cold frame years ago from seeds. I've replanted them each year ever since with seeds that I collect during the fall. Bumble bees love them. Cut the dead heads back and they will bloom prolifically from June until to the first frost. As with all plants if you keep them healthy with good soil, the right amount of fertilzer and water they resist pests and disease quite. I sometimes have to zap the aphids with a little soap or malathian when I first put them out in May, but that's it for the rest of the year.
On Jul 16, 2004, Stitch626 from Champaign, IL (Zone 5b) wrote:
Seeds have overwintered on southwest side of house. Plant has been known to reach over 6 feet, despite my attempts to rein it in. At this height, it has also been observed to completely uproot itself after a heavy rain. I will have to try harder to keep it more balanced.
Hummers love it. It also is enjoyed by bees and butterflies.
On Nov 20, 2003, suncatcheracres from Old Town, FL wrote:
I recently saw this plant for the first time growing in a large patch in morning sun in Gainesville, Florida. The deep orange flowers were spectacular, on five to six foot tall plants, and some had gone to seed, so next year I will have some growing too!
In reading up on this plant I found it is really a "perennial grown as an annual," that will self sow, and that there are several smaller cultivars than the six foot tall species, for smaller gardens. Southern Living Garden Book lists 'Torch' as a bushy four footer, and 'Goldfinger' and 'Sundance' as three footers. This book says they all have hollow stems and should be cut with care for bouquets in order to avoid bending the stalks.
I have many buterflies already in my garden, but no Monarchs, which I have read only locally migrate up and down the Florida peninsula with the changing seasons, so I think I have a good chance of attracting them into my garden. I already have at least a half dozen milkweeds (Asclepias) growing, as a larval plant for Monarchs, so I really hope that with the addition of Tithonia I can finally attract these beautiful butterflies into my garden.
On Nov 19, 2003, mrsmitty from Jacksonville, FL (Zone 9a) wrote:
My neighbor across the street introduced me to this plant. She just 'ripped' 4 small ones out of the ground and I planted them. They all did wonderful and didn't die from shock. They reseed on their own, I collect seeds when the flower heads turn downward and appear dried out.
On Oct 29, 2003, onalee from Brooksville, FL (Zone 9a) wrote:
I love these because they attract so many butterflies and hummingbirds to the garden!! I plant them with my Butterfly Weed to create butterfly nirvana! Nector for the butterflies and milkweed for the caterpillars . .. They LOVE IT! I've had more Monarch's here this year than I've ever seen before! My neighbor has the same Butterfly weed that I have but no caterpillars - because they don't have the Mexican sunflower there to attract the adults to the area to begin with.
Perfect plant for full sun, average soil. Little care required - lots of blooms.
When planting - make sure you don't cover the seeds, they need light to germinate. Just sprinkle on the ground, water and wait . ..
On Aug 28, 2003, eloopj from Atlanta, GA (Zone 7b) wrote:
This is my first time growing this plant. Mine is in full sun till about 2pm. It's 5' tall with several buds ready to open. My friend Yvana gave me this plant from seeds her Aunt brought her back from a trip to Paris, France
On Aug 1, 2003, airren from Alabaster, AL (Zone 7b) wrote:
2003 was the first year I planted the mexican sunflower. I notice in this forum that the max height is 6ft - but mine is over 12 feet tall now and higher than the roof. A wonderful habitat for butterflies and a great bee attractor.
Mine are bright orange. Not blooming yet, but last year the plant had 30-50 blooms at a time, with a dozen butterflies at one time. It needs essentially no care, withstanding even high heat and humidity. I have numerous butterfly bushes, and this one takes the prize for attracting butterflies, although I've never seen a hummingbird on them.
On Feb 4, 2001, alison from Nichols, IA (Zone 5a) wrote:
Large impressive plant, can reach 6' tall. Has 3" red-orange flowers that are dahlia-like. Great for attracting both hummingbirds and butterflies!!
This plant has been said to grow in the following regions:
, Auburn, Alabama Toney, Alabama Vincent, Alabama Tortolita, Arizona Batesville, Arkansas Laguna West-lakeside, California Long Beach, California Oakland, California Richmond, California Sacramento, California San Clemente, California San Francisco, California Longmont, Colorado Camden, Delaware Talleyville, Delaware Bartow, Florida Cutler Ridge, Florida Gainesville, Florida Haverhill, Florida Jacksonville, Florida Lake Worth, Florida Live Oak, Florida Macgregor, Florida Melrose Park, Florida North De Land, Florida Old Town, Florida Palm Bay, Florida Palm Shores, Florida Pembroke Pines, Florida Port Charlotte, Florida Spring Hill, Florida Tampa, Florida Timber Pines, Florida Trenton, Florida Venus, Florida Atlanta, Georgia (2 reports) Braselton, Georgia Cornelia, Georgia La Grange, Georgia North Decatur, Georgia Vernonburg, Georgia Haliimaile, Hawaii Belleville, Illinois Champaign, Illinois Anderson, Indiana Tipton, Indiana Gladbrook, Iowa Nichols, Iowa Brookville, Kansas Centralia, Kansas Derby, Kansas Barbourville, Kentucky Hebron, Kentucky Zachary, Louisiana Fort Kent, Maine Columbia, Maryland Cresaptown-bel Air, Maryland Salisbury, Maryland Quincy, Massachusetts Yarmouth, Massachusetts Fairmont, Minnesota Nevis, Minnesota Conway, Missouri Maplewood, Missouri Thayer, Missouri Helena, Montana Blair, Nebraska Washington, New Hampshire Blackwood, New Jersey Elephant Butte, New Mexico Fairacres, New Mexico Belle Terre, New York Crown Point, New York Ronkonkoma, New York Southold, New York Candler, North Carolina Efland, North Carolina Mountain View, North Carolina Versailles, Ohio Oklahoma City, Oklahoma Talihina, Oklahoma Portland, Oregon Coopersburg, Pennsylvania East Washington, Pennsylvania Emmaus, Pennsylvania Malvern, Pennsylvania Philadelphia, Pennsylvania Warren, Pennsylvania Wilkes-barre, Pennsylvania Loris, South Carolina Oakland, South Carolina Pawleys Island, South Carolina Simpsonville, South Carolina Murfreesboro, Tennessee Austin, Texas (2 reports) Brazoria, Texas Houston, Texas (4 reports) Kurten, Texas Mesquite, Texas San Antonio, Texas Sugar Land, Texas Sunset Valley, Texas White Settlement, Texas Basye, Virginia Castlewood, Virginia Fairview Beach, Virginia Mc Lean, Virginia Sterling, Virginia Timberville, Virginia Virginia Beach, Virginia North Bend, Washington Seattle, Washington Eau Claire, Wisconsin Marinette, Wisconsin Sturgeon Bay, Wisconsin