2022 was the twelfth year of The Big Sunflower Project with people taking part in the UK, Germany, Greece, Australia and the USA.
This year the project received a huge amount of support which began with a donation from Dynacure, a clinical-stage company focused on developing and commercialising novel therapies, to transform the lives of rare disease patients, with limited or no treatment options. As well as their generous funding, Dynacure also shared sunflower photos and stories on their social media pages, to help raise awareness of The Big Sunflower Project and of centronuclear and myotubular myopathy.
The project was featured in blog posts by Rare Revolution Magazine and Beacon For Rare Diseases.
Love Chester and Love Wirral magazines, Action For Happiness, Amberol, National Children’s Gardening Week, The National Garden Gift Voucher scheme and the National Allotment Society supported the project in print and on social media and Cultivating Change, a seed donation initiative which supports wellbeing and mental health, partnered with the project, by offering The Big Sunflower Project community the chance to win some of their seed bundles.
As always many beautiful photos were received and these were shared across social media over the summer, raising awareness of the project and of centronuclear and myotubular myopathy. If you grew sunflowers this summer but have not yet sent photos it is not too late. Photos can be sent by email or shared on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and LinkedIn using #TheBigSunflowerProject.
You can also share your sunflower growing story. Again, stories help the project raise awareness of centronuclear and myotubular myopathy and evidence the impact of the project. You can read stories from previous projects below.
If you have grown sunflowers with the project this year and would be willing to share your story, please get in touch.
After a sunflower has flowered, its seeds can be harvested for planting again the following year. A single seed planted in the spring can produce many seeds in the autumn and these can be extracted from the seed head once a sunflower has dried out. If you have sunflowers that are now past their best, you can save the seeds for growing next summer or as food for wildlife over the winter. Firstly chop off the flower head and brush away the pollen, under which you will find your sunflower seeds, then leave the flower head to dry. You can learn more about harvesting sunflower seeds on the project website.
Although the project is now at end for this year in the UK, if you are in a part of the world that is about to get its summer, please consider buying a packet of seeds and growing a sunflower to raise awareness of centronuclear and myotubular myopathy.
And to everyone who has taken part in the project this year, a massive thank you. I look forward to growing sunflowers with you again in 2023.
Further information about the project can be found on here on the project website and on the project social media pages.