Back in the spring I saw an ad on Facebook for pink sunflowers. The variety was said to be ‘Pink Pooh’ and, at first sight, the fully double pink flowers looked quite convincing. If it was a Photoshop job then it was well done. And that, of course, was exactly right – it was a well done Photoshop job. You can see it above.
My friend Alison Levey over at The Blackberry Garden blog checked the same Facebook ad and we decided to do a little test. Alison ordered some seed, sowed it, potted up the seedlings and then passed three of them on to me.
A few days ago Alison reported what she discovered and just over a week ago the first buds on my three plants opened. As you can see, above, each plant produced a perfectly nice, yellow flowered, single sunflower: an unbranched stem with just one flower at the top – it’s probably one of those varieties grown increasingly on a farm scale for bird seed.
But not a double pink. Are we surprised? Not really.
And it’s not just pink sunflowers. There are “rainbow” tomatoes (below) with blue, purple, puce and buttercup yellow fruits all on the same truss not to mention multicoloured tulips (also below) seen nowhere on the planet outside websites trying to sell us the doctored images.
So, in the words of every shopping and consumer rights expert across the world: “If it looks too good to be true, then it probably is.” In these cases, we can scratch out the “probably”. Don’t waste your money.