Contemporary sunflowers trace their ancestry to plants found at archaeological sites dating from 3,000 BC. While they grew abundantly on the Great Plains, sunflowers were first purposely cultivated by Native Americans in the Southwest or Mississippi River valley area as a source of medicine, fiber, seeds, and oil.
When the European settlers arrived, they immediately recognized the value of sunflowers and sent seeds back to Europe. There they found a place in English cottage gardens and even Van Gogh’s paintings. However, it was in Russia that the sunflower became a major agricultural crop. They provided a source of oil that could be eaten without breaking church dietary laws. Early in the 20th Century, Russian growers spearheaded the breeding and selection for disease resistance and high oil content. In the 1960s, the U.S. began sustained commercial production of oil seed cultivars to produce vegetable oil.
Long beloved as part of the rural landscape, sunflowers have been embraced by gardeners as an ornamental plant relatively recently. Responding to this interest, breeders in Germany, Japan and the U.S. have developed types particularly suitable for home gardens. -from Burpee.com
Not long ago after seeing some pretty cool pics of sunflowers, I was wishing I had a some near by to give it a try for myself. I guess my wish came true because a few days later I came upon a huge field full of them. Here are a few of the images I shot that day. Each are 3 shot HDRi combined in HDR Efex Pro 2. Hope you enjoy and have a great weekend!
“Winter is nature’s way of saying, “Up yours.”
― Robert Byrne
“Blow, blow, thou winter wind, thou art not so unkind as man’s ingratitude.” ~William Shakespeare
Now that Fall is dwindling away and winter is rapidly approaching, I thought I would post a photo that will hopefully elicit thoughts of spring and warmth and sun. A little reminder for those of us who live in areas with cold climates and loath the coming bitterness of winter and all its trappings. Who know just how dreary and lethargic the long cold winter can be.
Although, when I asked my daughter to give me an adjective to describe winter, she said with a smile on her face, “cheerful.”
~Perhaps I need it more than anyone.
“What good is the warmth of summer, without the cold of winter to give it sweetness.” ― John Steinbeck, Travels with Charley: In Search of America
You may not of known: Dried hibiscus is edible, and is often a delicacy in Mexico.