One of the challenges of feeding chickens in the city was finding a source of chicken feed. Sometimes I didn't have time to go order in advance, and I was stuck buying from the grocery, and on at least one occasion, I bought sunflower seeds.
I have tried, on numerous occasions, to grow a sunflower circle in our garden. I have an image of a circle of sunflowers with morning glories twining up them, blooming golden and amethyst in August. But the rabbits have always eaten the sunflowers when they were small, and so they never grew to the grand heights needed to bloom.
After the fox incident, I watched the yard for feathers for a while - we have a number of them around the house. I also noticed a seedling sunflower in the back lawn, presumably planted accidentally by a pecking chicken. I have been mowing around it now for almost two months, and Emily discovered this morning that it is finally blooming.
It is relatively short - a scant 3 feet tall at best. Most of the bottom leaves have been eaten off, and several of the remaining leaves are ragged. I accidentally stepped on it once when I backed into it while tending the spreading pumpkin vines nearby. We still don't know what our next household animal will be - aside from the many wild rabbits in the yard - and much as I want one, I fear the huge responsibility of another life in my protection. This morning, though, we got one last greeting from the chickens, and it is a real beauty.