Wednesday, September 13, 2006

Deep Thoughts About Sunflowers

I was removing seeds from giant sunflower heads and it just got me thinkin'...

>> The person who invented barcodes must have been doing the same thing at some point. Thousands upon thousands upon thousands of variations in the lines in sunflowers. Some even have no lines. Does it indicate a difference in the genetic code? Maybe.

>> 8 foot tall flowers have an amazing structure. The stalk is nearly as hard as wood, yet the growth of these beasts is so much faster than a tree. Weeks, rather than years. The heads easily weigh a few pounds, so there has to be some major structure inside to keep it up, but if you look inside, the major support is a whole lotta cotton-candy fibre. Very odd.

>> The thousands of flowers and seeds on the head are in very strict rows. A very orderly flower, yet every once in a while you find a seed pod without a seed. Why was that particular flower overlooked by the insects? Did they somehow know it was going to produce a bad seed or did they simply miss it by accident...a matter of random misses? Or did the insect do its job only to have the seed aborted? Hmmm..

>> There are heads which are whiter than the others yet they seem to happily coexist with the ones that have more dark stripes. Hmmm... a world lesson to be learned?

>>I found a recipe to make salted/roasted sunflower seeds. It's pretty easy and tasty. It takes me back to childhood, really. A pretty healthy snack food! Simply soak the seeds overnight in a bowl of salted water (1/2 cup to 2 qt of water). Bake in the oven until dry roasted. The time will vary depending upon how many you're bakin'. With four heads, I get enough to fill the largest bowl that Tupperware makes. LOTS of seeds! I may try experimenting with flavors. Watch out "David" , I may beat you at your own game.