The sunflower. A bright golden beam of light. What could be more beautiful? Only perhaps entire fields of them, covering the landscape with their sunny faces. Well-loved around the world and prevalent seemingly everywhere, the sunflower is an international delight, and a treasure to be found in Israel.
Sunflowers – Symbol of Light and Happiness
Sunflowers are a truly remarkable plant. Originating in the Americas, they have since spread out all around the world, growing almost anywhere that there is an abounding amount of sunlight. Cheerful and happy flowers, they are beloved around the world; appearing in famous artwork such as Van Gogh’s countless impressionist representations. The Incas even used sunflowers to symbolize the Sun God bringing them into the temple as a part of their worship ceremonies.
Besides being a symbol of cheerful bliss and light, the sunflower is used most famously for its seeds (especially common in Israel!) which are eaten plain or used to make sunflower oil. Ukraine is ironically the number one producer of sunflowers seeds in the world! Also, Native Americans traditionally used sunflowers for medicinal purposes, making a juice from the stems to treat wounds. In China, the sunflower is a symbol of long life. To various Native American groups, it is a sign of harvest and bounty.
Best Places to See the Sunflowers in Israel
Israel is no stranger to bountiful fields of sunflowers, just like most countries in the world. Blooming in the late spring/early summer (May-June), they are some of the only flowers sturdy enough to survive under the harsh Israeli sun. And most importantly, when visiting the sunflower fields, although the plants are sturdy, remember to be careful and respect the fields. These are individual farms and people’s livelihoods. Don’t leave trash or trample the plants!
Perhaps the best place to see the sunflowers in Israel, Kibbutz Hulda in central Israel was our location of choice. Located in the fields across from the entrance of the Kibbutz, we initially had some difficulties locating the actual fields. Fortunately, our friend’s drone proved useful as we flew it in search of some specks of yellow amongst all the brown and green. The best time to see the sunflowers in Kibbutz Hulda is in the morning as the sunflowers start to wilt as the day progresses. In order to get there, there is a small dirt road diverting from the main highway, a little before the entrance to the Kibbutz. After a few minutes’ drive, you will see a bridge over the railroad tracks that leads to the endless sunflower fields.
The northern part of Israel is also abundant with scattered fields of sunflowers. The Jezreel valley is speckled with different fields. Vastly enormous sunflower fields can be found on the highways surrounding Afula. The Haifa district contains many different locations for sunflower spotting.
Fashion Shoot in the Sunflower Fields
There is hardly a person in existence who hasn’t wanted to frolic through sunflower fields and take photos. We are certainly no exception. The elegant yellow plants were truly an inspiration.
Gathering together some of our favorite pieces to coordinate with and compliment the flower’s beauty, we gallivanted off to take some photos. My handmade crochet granny square top could not have been a more perfect fit. Yellow, sunflower-like flowers surrounded by brown yarn- the ideal camouflaged outfit. I was becoming one of the sunflowers. Add a bright yellow sunhat from the 60s (my grandma’s), retro sunnies, and some leather boots….all good to go. The thought process behind Brooke’s outfit was very clear. Sunny yellow in the sunflower fields. Long stripes complimented the tall stems of the sunflowers for a geometric delight. Adding a romantic sunhat to solidify the dreamy look.
Check out the full post of the handmade crochet top: CROCHET DAISY GRANNY SQUARE CROP TOP IN THE HEART OF TEL AVIV
Fun Facts About Sunflowers
- Heliotropism – in the early stages of a sunflower’s growth they are heliotropic, which means they turn their flowers to follow the movement of the sun. Rotating from the east to the west as the day progresses, they then end the day towards the east, ready for the next day’s sunrise.
- Seeds – Each sunflower can contain anywhere from 1000-2000 seeds!!
- Colorful – Although we’re all used to the typical yellow sunflowers, they come in many different colors and shapes (over 70 different species) ranging from yellow to burnt orange to maroon to brown.
- Tall – Sunflowers are super tall plants averaging at 3 feet tall each (almost 1 meter). The tallest sunflower ever recorded reached over 30 feet tall (over 9 meters)
- Purifying – Sunflowers are truly remarkable as they have an incredible capability to absorb countless different types of toxins and store them without leaking them back into the environment. Zinc, copper, and even high levels of nuclear radiation. Because of this, after nuclear disasters such as Hiroshima, Fukushima, and Chernobyl, enormous fields of sunflowers were planted to help absorb the toxic radiation.
- Yellow Paint – sunflower petals can be used to create a vibrant yellow paint! Check out how here.
Looking for more amazing flowers in Israel? Check out our post: 5 BEST PLACES TO SEE SPECTACULAR WILDFLOWERS & FIELDS OF FLOWERS IN ISRAEL
Check out some of the drone footage we got of the sunflower fields here on our Instagram!
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Lots of Love and Safe Travels,
Danielle and Brooke, Colorful Sisters