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Starting Sunflower Seeds Indoors – 7 Easy Steps

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Sunflowers seem to be one of the cheeriest flowers in the garden! They grow beautifully alongside vegetables and other flowers. Try starting sunflower seeds indoors to get a jump start on your flower garden this year!

So many different varieties of sunflowers look gorgeous and make it difficult to choose just one to plant.

Starting Sunflowers Indoors from Seed in Egg Cartons
Starting Sunflowers Indoors from Seed in Egg Cartons

I say, plant them all! Grow a magnificent sunflower garden if you have the space. If not, interplant sunflowers with some of your vegetable garden crops. The pop of color and beautiful cut flowers are well worth the minimal task of starting from seed.

Try these simple steps for starting sunflower seeds indoors before the final frost.

What are the benefits of starting sunflower seeds indoors?

Growing sunflowers from seed indoors speeds up the timeline until you get to enjoy the first blooms. Starting sunflowers early also gives you the option to plant the flowers as a natural trellis near climbing plants like pole beans.

Sunflower Seedling in egg carton
Sunflower Seedling in egg carton

When can you plant sunflower seeds?

Plan to plant sunflower seeds indoors about 4 weeks before your area’s last frost date. If you wish to direct sow sunflower seeds, you should wait to plant them until after the threat of frost has passed.

Where do you start sunflower seeds indoors?

You can start sunflowers from seed in seed starting trays, egg cartons, or nursery pots and grow them in a sunny location or under grow lights until it is safe to move them outdoors permanently.

Sunflower Seedling growing in an egg carton
Sunflower Seedling growing in an egg carton

How to Plant Sunflower Seeds

Gather up those gorgeous packets of sunflower seeds and get ready to plant an amazing flower garden!

Follow these tips to grow sunflowers from seed:

  1. Check the packet for the ideal planting depth. Different types of sunflowers may require different depths.
  2. Fill a seed starting tray or egg carton with moist potting soil. You can also use nursery pots or other flower pots.
  3. Poke a hole the ideal depth for the sunflower seeds. If you aren’t sure, plant sunflower seeds ½ inch deep.
  4. Cover the hole. Replace the potting soil to fill the seed hole.
  5. Water once more. Spray the top of the soil with water to get a little extra moisture down to the seed.
  6. Move the seeds to a sunny spot. You can also place the trays or containers under grow lights to jump start germination of sunflower seeds.
  7. Check daily for growth and watering. Watch to see how long it takes your seeds to sprout! Water whenever the soil becomes dry.

In short time, you will enjoy gorgeous sunflowers from your own garden! Consider branching varieties for a plentiful supply of blooms.

Border Collie Dog and Sunflower Seedlings in Egg Carton
Border Collie Dog and Sunflower Seedlings in Egg Carton

Final Thoughts: Starting Sunflower Seeds Indoors

Starting sunflowers from seed inside continues to be one of my annual traditions. We love sunflowers so much – I feel like they are a total must-have for the vegetable garden!

As you grow sunflowers more and more, you’ll discover your favorite varieties. So far, we love teddy bear sunflowers, red branching sunflowers, velvet queen sunflowers, and countless others.

Lots of sunflower seedlings in egg carton
Lots of sunflower seedlings in egg carton

What are your favorite sunflowers to start from seed? Do you have any questions or tips on planting sunflowers? Hit us up in the comments and we can chat – we love hearing from you!

Happy Gardening!

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