How to Manage Pests

Pests in Gardens and Landscapes

Sunflower—Helianthus spp.

Family Asteraceae (Sunflower family)

Plant Identification

Sunflowers are either annual or perennial plants mostly grown for cut flowers. Flowers bloom in summer and fall and attract butterflies. Plants are tough, hairy plants and consist of a brown circular center of seeds surrounded by short yellow petals. Perennial forms grow rapidly and can become invasive.

Optimum conditions for growth

Sunflowers prefer areas with full sun. Most species require regular amounts of water. Large species require very moist and rich soil.

Sunflower blossoms

Close up of blossom
Close up of blossom

Pests and disorders of Helianthus spp.


Invertebrates (cont.)


Environmental disorders



Statewide IPM Program, Agriculture and Natural Resources, University of California
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