Friday, August 13, 2010

Titillating Tithonia

I stumbled upon Tithonia, commonly known as
Mexican Sunflower, in 1997.

Although reds, oranges and yellows are my least favorite
colors in clothing, I do love them so in my garden.
I was so impressed by the vivid color, I decided to grow it in
my flower beds at my house in Chester county.

After selling the house, and moving to Franklin county,
I forgot all about it until last year when a fellow master gardener
asked if I would like some for the Pollinator Demonstration Garden.

My love was rekindled.

This spring, I paid the Amish to grow a pack of seeds
I purchased at Walmart.
And for a few dollars, I had myself a whole flat of Tithonia.

I remembered to pay back that fellow master gardener
with a few plants,

shared a few more with other friends

and put the remainder in my flower beds.

I knew they would look great growing in amongst the Russian Sage.
And they do.

These photos were taken by my husband and myself.
Some, from the comfort of our living room.

I had the foresight to plant some of these right in front of our
bow window in the living room.

We get to enjoy all of the activity three feet away inside our home.
And thank goodness for that.
The heat has been just brutal this summer.

As you can see, the butterflies love this stuff as much as I do.

It makes a wonderful landing platform for them.

Where they can do their little butterfly jig.
Honest. Watch them closely and long enough.
You will see for yourself how they move their legs
as if they are doing a little dance.

The bumble bees love it as well.
Yet I don't see too many honey bees on this.
They are busy buzzing around on the Russian Sage next door.

The hummingbirds love it too.
Yet those little suckers have been far too fast to capture on film.

Because some of these photos were taken from inside the house,
they may not be the best quality.
But I think you get the idea.

As you can see, there's something irresistable about this plant.
It is my hope that with the help of my little friends here,
I have enchanted you and you are now as much in love
with the Mexican Sunflower as we are.

You are now leaving Tithonia Town.
Please come back to see us again real soon!


  1. That butterfly jig reminds me of a 6-legged cat prepping a spot before curling up to sleep.