Remember the golden glory of the sunflower fields in full bloom about a month ago? Well, their petals have faded away, leaves have whithered, and their flower heads which once faced the sun cheerfully now stare sadly at the ground.
After they were pollinated by a myriad of insects, they began to form seeds. Soon, the weight of the growing seeds forced the flower heads to droop downward.
But despite their sad, ragged appearance, they’ve accomplished their life’s purpose and produced thousands of seeds.
Soon, the combine will come to harvest the seeds. Some of them will be pressed to remove their oil. The resulting sunflower oil will appear in your grocery store. After the oil is removed, the leftover sunflower pulp will be used in livestock feed.
But some of the seeds will remain intact to be sold as birdfeed. Little bits of sun will feed the birds through the cold winter.