Written by Don Richardson
Mexican Sunflower (Tithonia Diversifolia)
Plant Type
Perennial Shrub
10’ tall, 3’ wide, spreads 
Sun Exposure
Full sun
Soil Type
Light sand, loam, clay
Soil pH
5.6-7.8 acidic - alkaline
Bloom Time
Summer, Fall, Winter
Hardiness Zones
9b-11   Food Forest Plant
Moderate Water, well drained
25°F – 110°F, Drought tolerant 
Pollinator, self-seeds 
Edible Plant
Medicinal Plant
Any reference to medicinal or culinary use of plants or plant parts should in no way be considered an endorsement by The Ocala Food Forest or its staff. Research is crucial in safe and proper consumption or experimentational use of any plant.

The Tithonia Diversifolia is a vibrant, eye-catching plant that grows in tropical regions. It is commonly known as the Mexican Sunflower, and it has become increasingly popular among gardeners in recent years. Let’s explore what makes this plant so special and why you should consider adding it to your own flower bed!
The Basics of Tithonia Diversifolia 
Tithonia Diversifolia is native to Mexico, Central America, and parts of South America. It belongs to the Asteraceae family and can reach heights of up to 10 feet tall with flowers in shades of yellow, orange, and red. This plant can thrive in almost any soil type as long as it receives ample sunlight. It requires very little maintenance; all it needs is regular watering and occasional pruning for optimal growth.
In addition to its aesthetic appeal, the Mexican Sunflower has practical benefits too. It attracts beneficial insects such as bees which help pollinate other plants in your garden; plus, its strong stems make it an ideal windbreak for other plants that may be more fragile. The plant also produces a high amount of nectar which makes it attractive to birds as well. By planting by plants that are affected by aphids or many other insects, the birds will take care of many insects invading your garden.
Uses for Tithonia Diversifolia  
Tithonia Diversifolia has many uses beyond just decorating your flower bed. Its flowers can be used to make tea or dried for use in potpourri; even the stems are useful because they can be made into rope or woven baskets! Additionally, some herbalists believe that this plant has medicinal properties due to its high content of Vitamin A and antioxidants.  
 All in all, Tithonia Diversifolia is an ideal addition to any garden since not only does it provide a beautiful display but also several practical uses too! With its vibrant colors and low-maintenance care requirements, this plant is sure to brighten up your outdoor space while providing a variety of benefits for both you and your garden guests alike! Whether you’re looking for something decorative or functional (or both!), Tithonia Diversifolia is worth considering when planning your next gardening project.


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