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Ray’s ‘Reach for the Sun’

Sunflowers - Ray Sore - Andover
PHOTO: Allan Pothecary

By Allan Pothecary

Local Andover resident and keen gardener, Ray Sore, was totally surprised with the super growth of this year’s sowing of sunflower seeds.

Eight seedlings were selected from the original crop, duly planted and all surpassed the expected six feet (1.8 metres) with one in particular going on to a spectacular twelve feet (3.66 metres)

Asked if there was a secret behind the extended growth, Ray explained that he was surprised with the result, “No special seeds were used nor were there special additives or fertilisers dug in to the soil.”

“I had to purchase elongated poles to support the plant against the windy days we experienced and am pleased to see it weather the storms that passed through.”

Despite the 82-year old from Eardley Avenue’s hugely impressive sight, Ray knows he is a few feet short of any British or world records.

The record for tallest sunflower is held by Richard Hope of Wigan who set the record in 2012 with a 26-foot plant. 

However, Ray is considering the prospect of saving some seeds for next year and seeing where that might take him.

Sunflowers - Ray Sore - Andover
PHOTO: Allan Pothecary

About the author

David Harber

David Harber is the founder and Managing Director of Love Andover, including the Love Andover Observer newspaper and 95.9FM Andover Radio. He is a fellow at the Royal Society of Arts and a card carrying member of the Nation Union of Journalists.