How To Revive A Dying Sunflower Plant? – 8 Things Everyone Can Do


Vibrant sunflower in full bloom at sunset, not in need of tips on how to revive a dying sunflower plant.

A sunflower plant not only makes your garden beautiful, but it is also a source of oil and food. What’s more, it is essential when planted in contaminated soil as it helps to detox the soil.

The botanical name of a sunflower is ‘Helianthus’. If you have just transferred your sunflower plant from one pot to another, or from nursery to garden, it is good to take proper care of it. Failure to do so, your precious plant might die. Also, sunflowers planted in a garden can die because of one reason or another.

If you notice that your sunflower is dying, here are some of the ways that you can revive it.

Ensure It Gets 6 Hours Of Sunlight

If your sunflower is dying, the first thing to check out is whether it is getting enough sunlight.

Sunflower is a very sensitive plant that doesn’t need little or too much sunlight for growth. If you notice that the leaves of your plant are drying, then it is because of getting too much sunlight. In this case, you should transfer the plant to a shady area or provide it with shade if it’s in a garden.

On the other hand, if the sunflower has weak stems or stunted growth, then it might not be getting enough sunlight. On average, sunflowers require at least 6 hours of sunlight.

So, anything above 6 hours or below may be bad for your plant. If you grow the plant indoors, ensure that you place it close to a south-facing window.

Ensure The Sunflower Receives Good Air Circulation

Before you plant your sunflower plant, make sure that the area receives good air circulation. Sunflowers thrive in places with excellent air circulation.

The area should have daytime temperatures of around 72 degrees Fahrenheit and nighttime temperatures of approximately 65 degrees Fahrenheit. So, if the area is very humid or cold, there is a high chance that the sunflower may wilt & die.

If it is a potted sunflower, look for a place in your home with the ideal temperatures to prevent it from dying.

Water The Sunflower Properly

Another cause of a dying sunflower is due to overwatering or under watering the plant.

Sunflower thrives in soil that is not too dry or soggy. If the sunflower leaves turn yellow, there is a high chance that you are overwatering the plant.

And if they droop leaves, then you may be under watering the plant. The best way to water your sunflower is twice a day. But if you allow its soil to dry excessively, then you will have to water it more often.

However, avoid overwatering the plant as this may cause the roots to rot and the plant to dry. If it is a potted plant, ensure it has fantastic drainage, and the soils should stay moist.

Fertilize The Sunflower

Just like any other plant, sunflowers need nutrients to grow strong and healthy. So, if they lack some nutrients, the plant may suffocate and die slowly.

For instance, if your plant lacks nitrogen, the lower leaves may start to yellow and drop. If that’s the case, you should provide your plant with the necessary nutrients.

Create a nutrient solution of calcium, magnesium, and water, then feed it to the dying sunflower. The fertilizer should be applied close to the soil so that it does not get near leaves. However, even though fertilizer is vital for the growth and survival of the plant, you should not fertilize it a week to bloom.

Fertilizing your plant when it wants to bloom will lead to few flowers but lush green foliage.

Get Rid Of Pests

Pest infestation is another thing to look out for. Pests such as aphids and mites can attack your sunflower and cause it to die.

For this reason, you need to constantly monitor your plant and get rid of pests before its too late. It is easy to spot pests on your plant as you will see discolored leaves or leaves with holes or deformed, as a result of pests feeding on them.

Getting rid of pests is simple as you can use a mild insecticidal soap or a mild soap.

Apply the solution on the leaves and stem.

Also, if you’re watering the sunflower too much, you should stop as this contributes to the pest infestation problem.

Prevent Fungal Infections

Apart from pests, your sunflower may be dying because of a fungal infection.

Check out for yellow leaves, which is a common sign for fungal infection. Common fungal infections include downy mildew. Typically, this condition is synonymous with waterlogged or clay soils.

If you notice that your leaves have turned yellow and sunk, fungus might be the problem. To revive the plant, reduce water use to keep the soil dry and apply fungicide on the sunflower. If the damage is excess, then you may have to remove the plant so that it does not affect others as it will rarely produce flowers.

Fungal infections should not be taken lightly as they cause the sunflower to wilt and droop. Also, they lead to stunted growth, and in severe cases, the plant might die.

Get the right fungicide and apply to the plant immediately you notice these signs.

Avoid Cold Weather Exposure

Cold weather is one of the main causes that can threat sunflowers’s life span. Sunflower plants is more sensitive to cold when compared to other ornamental plants around the garden. Any time the weather get extremely cold, the sunflower plant can get brown and die.

To avoid this, it is recommended to not plant a sunflower when the soil temperature drops below 60 F.

In the event of frost threat, it is always advisable to wait until the weather warms up and it is safe to continue planting.

Also keep in mind the pH levels of soil as sunflowers prefer acidic soil that has pH values of around 6-6.8. Having alkaline soil can turn the sunflowers leave to yellow brown. This can result in stalled growth, wilting and plant dying.

Transfer It To A Bigger Pot

If you’re growing your sunflower in a pot, make sure to repot it at the right time. When the sunflower outgrows a pot, it will stop growing, and the roots will be somehow root-bound. If not corrected, the plant will die. However, you can revive the plant by repotting it in a larger pot. Also, the pot should be larger with good drainage.

When repotting, use properly draining potting soil and repot the sunflower with its root ball.


If you have a dying sunflower at home, there is no need to panic. The points that we’ve shared above should help you revive your dying sunflower.

However, you can avoid this beautiful, edible, and nutritious plant from dying or even showing signs of dying by taking good care of it. Simply ensure that you provide your plant with the right amount of water, sunlight, fertilizer, and temperature. Also, you should protect it from fungal infections and pest attacks.

We hope that you’ve found this article very helpful!

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