Sunflowers are tall annuals with bright yellow flowers that resemble large daisies. They are hardy plants that are easy to grow and maintain in all sorts of soil conditions as long as they are regularly watered and placed in full sun. The plants grow easily from seeds that need to be planted in later spring or early summer. The plant flowers through the summer and even autumn. Sunflowers are usually not affected by diseases and insects. However, a number of homemade remedies can be tried to take care of pests on sunflowers.
Mix one tablespoon of dishwashing soap with one gallon of water. After test spraying a couple of leaves, spray on the whole plant for aphids, mites, scales, mealybugs and thrips.
A spray made with one part ammonia and seven parts water also helps to get rid sunflowers of bugs.
Vegetable Oil Spray
Mix together one tablespoon of liquid dishwashing soap with one cup of vegetable oil. A variety of oils such as safflower, peanut, sunflower or soybean can be used. Take about 2 grams of this mixture and mix with one cup water and use to spray the sunflower plants to control bugs such as aphids, mealybugs, scales and mites.
Baking Soda Spray
Fungal diseases such as blackspot and powdery mildew can be remedied by mixing one teaspoon of baking soda with one quart of warm water. To this add a teaspoon of liquid dishwashing soap. Spray on plants. Smaller plants can be drenched with the mixture by using watering can.