Please express your thanks to Marcus, Airo, Jonathan, and Hank for germinating sunflowers for us to gift to you and our neighbors. In past summers, WPC has germinated and shared sunflowers calling it Sunflowers Around Wedgwood, but this summer the sunflower starts will have an additional meaning.
We learned that sunflowers (soniashnyk in Ukrainian) were introduced to Ukraine in the mid 18th century. The soil and climate made the flower thrive there. The people snacked on the seeds and crushed them into soil. Sunflower oil became popular in Ukraine as an alternative to butter during Lent. Sunflowers adorn clothing and headpieces during their cultural ceremonies. Now, sunflower oil from Ukraine is a global export and is vital to their economy.
The sunflower has also become a sign of peace. In 1966, when the country gave up their nuclear weapons, personnel from the US, Russia and Ukraine planted sunflowers on the site of a missile base. The sunflower is known as hyper-accumulator plant because it can pull toxins from the soil. In 1986 sunflowers were planted at the Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant after the explosion and release of radioactive material.
Stay tuned for our Sunflower plant giveaway coming soon. If you want to check out their progress, you can see them on the patio. They should be popping through the soil anytime now.
Jennifer and Maddie