Helianthus annuus has been historically present in Virginia gardens. In 1793, Lady Jean Skipworth included sunflowers on the list of plants growing in her garden at Prestwould, the Skipworth family home, in Clarksville, Virginia.
Sunflowers are annuals and prefer full sun and moist, well-drained soil. Bright yellow blooms are produced atop plants that range from 4-10' in height and bloom from mid to late summer. The seeds are eaten by birds. When established, sunflowers are deer tolerant.
Direct sow seeds into the garden after the last frost date in spring. Plant ½" deep and 2' apart. Seeds germinate in 10-14 days. USDA Zones 2-11.