Wednesday, July 28, 2021

Photo Review of a Random Act of Beauty in Paso Robles


Sunflowers on Parking Strip
Sunflowers on Paso Robles Corner Parking Strip, © Barbara Radisavljevic

A Random Act of Beauty?

Would you rather see these gorgeous sunflowers next to your house every day or would you rather have the view below?

neighborhood sidewalk
City Maintained Paso Robles Corner Parking Strip, © Barbara Radisavljevic

That's what I thought. And that's probably what Tiffany, the woman who planted the sunflowers, thought, too. This is part of the parking strip the City of Paso Robles planted.  It's across from the house next door to Tiffany. I can see why she preferred sunflowers. 

I discovered her literal forest of sunflowers on my way to the grocery store in Paso Robles California one July afternoon. I was participating in a Medium Photo-a-Day Challenge and I hardly ever go out of my neighborhood. When I do go anywhere I can't walk, I try to take a picture of something unique for the challenge. So on my way to the store my plan was to drive around the block the store was on, park behind the store, and walk until I found something worth taking a picture of. I hadn't even turned the corner when I saw this in front of me. 

Sunflower Forests on 21st Street
Sunflower Forests on 21st Street, © Barbara Radisavljevic

In the foreground you see the sunflowers in the parking strip in front of Tiffany's house. In the background is the center strip across the southbound lane of the street heading toward Vine Street. I walked the center strip and it appears that besides the flowering trees there, the city had also planted some hummingbird sage (unless someone else did). Most of that strip past the sunflowers looked like this.

hummingbird sage in the city
Hummingbird Sage in July on 21st Street Median Strip, © Barbara Radisavljevic

There was also a lot of this grassy plant on the median strip. I'm not sure what it is but the city plants it in all these storm drain strips. The white flower is bindweed or wild cucumber. It's a weed. I've no idea what the green plant at the back is. I can understand why Tiffany preferred sunflowers.

median strip filled with ornamental grass
Unidentified Grasses and Bindweed on 21st Street Median Strip, © Barbara Radisavljevic

You Can Also Create This Kind of Beauty

When I see sunflowers in bloom they lift my spirits. They speak of the energy it takes to grow tall and reach for the sky. And they are easy to grow. Would you like to get involved in your own random act of beauty in your neighborhood or property? You could even make it a family project. 

First you need seeds. Here are some good choices for an awesome display.

8 Sunflower Seeds to Plant | Bulk 1000+ Seeds | Heirloom Seeds | Non-GMO Flower Seeds for Planting Outdoors | Garden Seeds for Baby Shower Favors or Wedding Favors | for Birds and Bees8 Sunflower Seeds to Plant | Bulk 1000+ Seeds | Heirloom Seeds | Non-GMO Flower Seeds for Planting Outdoors | Garden Seeds for Baby Shower Favors or Wedding Favors | for Birds and BeesSunflower Seeds for Planting | Autumn Beauty Non-GMO Sunflower Seeds | Planting Packets Include Planting InstructionsSunflower Seeds for Planting | Autumn Beauty Non-GMO Sunflower Seeds | Planting Packets Include Planting Instructions


Start Your Day with Sunflower Energy

I confess my normal wake-up default condition is not energetic. It's groggy. I can't even get my eyes to focus when I first get up. Until I've had a couple of cups of tea I'm not very alert. Having your preferred hot beverage while looking a sunflower in the eye should brighten your morning perspective as you fuel up. So I made this for you on Zazzle. You can make it whatever size or style you like best. The largest size mug is eleven ounces. That's enough to wake the brain up!

Sunflowers to Perk You Up as You Enjoy Your Drink Coffee MugSunflowers to Perk You Up as You Enjoy Your Drink Coffee MugSunflowers to Perk You Up as You Enjoy Your Drink Coffee Mug


Are you ready to go plant sunflowers this autumn and help brighten the corner of the world where you live? Too many sunflowers live lonely lives with only a few weeds for companionship. 

sunflowers in the city
Lonely Sunflower Surrounded by Weeds on 21st Street Parking Strip, © Barbara Radisavljevic

Note: The author may receive a commission from purchases made using links found in this article. “As an Amazon Associate, Ebay (EPN) and/or Esty (Awin) Affiliate, I (we) earn from qualifying purchases.”


  1. I've always loved sunflowers, so really enjoyed your photographic review of using them as a random act of beauty. Thanks for brightening my day, Barbara.

    1. I love them because they seem so cheerful. There are other flowers that I think are prettier or more fragrant, but sunflowers are show stoppers, especially when they are grouped like this.

  2. What a wonderful way to brighten up the city block! The sunflower is my husband's favorite flower. He would love Tiffany's response to the otherwise lack-luster look in the median strip. I'm sure we would all appreciate the beauty of the sunflowers in our own neighborhoods. The mug you created is beautiful and would certainly be the perfect picture to wake up too.

    1. Thanks, Miss Mouse. I'm just glad I happened upon these. It was a random discovery of beauty that made my day. I'll probably go back tomorrow since I have to shop again. I wonder how long the flowers will survive without rain.

  3. I too love sunflowers. I enjoyed your review

    1. Thank you, Mary Beth. I saw the lovely sunflower photos you posted after I'd already scheduled this and hoped I hadn't beaten you to the punch here. Of course, there can never be too many sunflowers and no two settings or photographer perspectives are alike. So it wouldn't matter if we both posted about sunflowers.

  4. Flowers definitely beautify our environment, and planting blooms is a gift to everyone who sees them. I love Tiffany’s “wall of sunflowers” 🌻 that significantly improves the view for her, her neighbors and visiting passersby. Your lovely sunflower mug can bring a touch of this flower’s cheerful beauty indoors. Thanks so much for sharing both your mug and Tiffany’s sunflowers!

  5. I so agree with you that planting flowers is a gift to all who see them. I have a neighbor who has a beautiful flower garden. Something is in bloom every day when I walk to the mailbox. What she planted gives me a daily dose of beauty. It makes me want to get back to my own garden.

  6. Flowers make everything better. The way the median was flowered-up is gorgeous. And yes, sunflowers have such a wonderful energy - like you said, tall, reaching for the sky. I love flowers and plants so much that for all special occasions that's what I tell my kids to get me; and they always do.

  7. Beautiful, I would take the sunflowers any day of the year. Plus 2021 is the year of the sunflower, so great timing. Good for the bees, eyes, and squirrels and birds. I love it and agree that it was a great picture to take.

  8. What a beautiful way to enrich the environment around us! Just love the idea of a sunflower forest! I love sunflowers too and grow some each year. Sunflower seeds grow quite easily and they are gorgeous. So lovely and cheerful to look at and also fantastic for the wildlife and if we leave the flowers when they have gone to see very useful for the birds.I also really like your Sunflower mug and beautiful photos! :)


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