Wednesday, August 07, 2019

Plant Profile: Black-eyed Susan

The Black-eyed Susan (Rudbeckia) is the Maryland state flower and is a native North American wildflower. It has one of the longest bloom periods of any perennial and can flower from July through September and beyond.

Deadheading will extend the bloom time. Rudbeckia is an excellent cut flower and can be used dried in arrangements as well.

  It prefers full sun, but can thrive and flower in part-sun situations. It is quite hardy and drought-tolerant, once established, and is not picky about soil types. There is no need to add any artificial fertilizer to it, instead I give them a thin layer of compost each spring.

Rudbeckia form clumps and can spread by runner or by re-seeding. It grows to about two to three feet wide by about as high. Black-eyed Susans are easy to dig and divide it to share with other gardeners.

   Butterflies and other wildlife are big fans of this flower. Leave the seedheads up for winter garden interest and to feed the birds.

   It is attractive massed in sunny flower borders or in a woodland garden. It pairs well with Echinacea, Yarrow, tall Sedums, Asters, Russian Sage, and ornamental grasses.

   There are many lovely cultivars of the Rudbeckia species. Three I like a lot are 'Goldsturm', ‘Maya’, and ‘Indian Summer’.

Rudbeckia: You Can Grow That!

The video was produced by Washington Gardener Magazine.
It was shot and edited by intern Alexandra Marquez.
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