Seed Stories: Hopi Sunflower Dye Plants

In our fibershed there are some twenty varieties of sunflower growing wild–some are native and some have traveled from pocket or packet to become a part of our wilder and cultivated landscapes.  The fresh flowers of many species can be used to create vibrant yellow dyes.  Beyond our region and throughout the US there are many more species of sunflower, sources range from numbers around 50 upward–some which carry the history of leaving the land, crossing oceans and returning hundreds of years later; transformed and in turn changing the landscape which was their birthplace. 

 

It is a complicated and vital aspect of regionalism to look at the ways in which we have traveled with seeds and which seeds have allowed us to travel.  The sunflower holds a truly unique series of journeys which are not always visible.  All these aspects help us to see the plant in context.  The Hopi sunflower does not grow wild in our area and yet it has been a part of our vocabulary within the context of our gardens.  It seems to do well in our fibershed and brings the possibilities for growing our spectrum of color possibilities and towards connecting to stories.  Read the full story here….. 

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