Mexican sunflower Tithonia rotundifolia 'Torch' Photo/Illustration: Chris Curless Mexican sunflower (Tithonia rotundifolia 'Torch') Genus: Tithonia 'Torch' is a quick-growing annual that produces vivid red or orange-red dahlia-like flowers from mid-summer on. Its leaves are somewhat attractive, being dark green and lobed. Plants can reach up to 6 feet tall and 2 feet wide in just a few months. Noteworthy Characteristics: Bright flowers, sturdy plants, vigorous growth. 'Torch' makes a good cut flower. Care: Provide well-drained, moderately fertile soil in full sun. Stake if necessary and shelter from strong winds. Grows best in hot, sunny weather. Propagation: Start indoors 4-6 weeks before last frost date and plant out after danger of frost has passed. Or sow directly into garden in late spring. Avoid exposing seedlings to cold. Problems: Slugs and snails, but nothing serious. Overview Height 3 ft. to 6 ft. Spread 1 ft. to 3 ft. Growth Habit Clumps Growth Pace Fast Grower Light Full Sun Only Moisture Dry to Medium Maintenance Low Characteristics Attracts Butterflies, Attracts Hummingbirds, Showy Flowers Bloom Time Early Fall, Late Summer, Summer Flower Color Orange, Salmon Uses Beds and Borders, Cut Flower Style Cottage Garden Seasonal Interest Summer Interest Type Annuals Tithonia rotundifolia 'Torch'View the discussion thread.