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Why are my sunflower seedlings bottom leaves turning yellow?

Hellianthus orange sun. Am I over watering? Under watering? (Watering about once a day as they're on a very sunny window sill.) I've been hardening them off outside on a warm patio for a couple of hours every day for the last week as it's been very warm here


  • fidgetbonesfidgetbones Posts: 15,851
    They are seed leaves. The food for the seedling is in them, until it produces its first true leaves. These take over and provide the plant with  food by photosynthesis.  Seed leaves usually wither away and die. Nothing to worry about.
    You don't stop doing new things because you get old, you get old because you stop doing new things. <3
  • Well that is good news! Usually I end up killing things with love (over watering) and I thought this was another case. Thanks for the quick reply!
  • FairygirlFairygirl west central ScotlandPosts: 46,057
    I'd just like to add that your seedlings are looking very good @gilla.walmsley :)

    You're doing the right thing - getting them accustomed to the big wide world too, but just keep them relatively sheltered when the weather gets rough, until they're fully acclimatised. When you plant them out, you can also bury them up to those first proper leaves, a bit like tomatoes.  :)
    It's a place where beautiful isn't enough of a word....

  • Thanks @Fairygirl ! I've only attempted to grow things from seed once before, so good to know they're looking ok so far. My seedlings (I've also got verbena rigida, petunia exserta and penstemon true blue on the go) are one of the only things keeping me sane during lockdown - so good to see new life.

    Thanks for the tip on burying those leaves - I wouldn't have known that. Fingers crossed they survive the transplanting when the time comes, as that's where everything seemed to die for me last time I tried 
  • FairygirlFairygirl west central ScotlandPosts: 46,057
    It's always better to err on the cautious side when planting outdoors.Wait until the temps and conditions are suitable, and then the seedlings will thrive.  :)

    I've noticed a big increase in queries about seedlings, tomatoes in particular, this year on the forum. I think the recent high temps have led people to believe it's summer, and seed sowing has then happened a bit early, which makes it difficult when the outdoor conditions change- as they probably will. People's houses are already full of 'bigger than usual' plants!
    It's a place where beautiful isn't enough of a word....

  • This is exactly what's happened to me and my friend! The high temps plus people spending more time at home and having the time. Fingers crossed we don't get a really cold spell before summer now...
  • FairygirlFairygirl west central ScotlandPosts: 46,057
    It's wise just to hang fire a bit @gilla.walmsley  :)

    We're used to waiting up here. April is often full of snow/hail and sleet, so you learn quite quickly not to sow too early  ;)
    It's a place where beautiful isn't enough of a word....

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