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General view June 30, 2003It rained cats and dogs last night and our field is very wet. The plants are growing well.  What do you notice about this scene compared to past field pictures?  Well, the important point is that you can't see the soil between the rows now.  Why is that important? Two reasons, sunlight can't hit the soil surface now to dry out the ground and weeds can't compete well with the larger sunflower plants. 

36 inch plant heightThe plants are about 36 inches tall and V16 to V17 stage. Look at the size of those leaves, they are huge. 

 


Alternating leavesI mentioned at an earlier date that sunflowers have an alternating arrangement of leaves on the stem. This is an excellent example of alternating leaves. As you move up the stem, a leaf is at about a 90 degree angle from the one below it.  


Growing pointThis is the growing point with a cluster of leaves. But the flower head is starting to develop. When you see a star-like structure that's the head and it is at the R1 stage. 


Side view growing pointThis is the arrangement of leaves under the growing point. There are at least eight or nine leaves within a couple inches of the growing point.