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Black Eyed Susan - Rudbeckia Fulgida
Black-Eyed Susan - Rudbeckia hirta
A bright and cheerful wildflower, the golden-yellow black-eyed Susan is a very popular flower. Commercial flowers range from annual to short-lived perennial types. A single 2-3 inch head of deep yellow ray flower with a dark brown center grows atop 1-2 ft bristly stems, appearing to have a black eye. Its green leaves are oval-shaped and irregularly divided. This wildflower survives in most North American zones, differing slightly by breed.
Found most commonly in sunny spots like meadows and woodland edges, black-eyed Susans thrive in full sun and loose, well-drained soil. Once established, these plants can withstand tough conditions. They grow rapidly, blooming twice in one season when pruned after flowering. The second bloom is smaller and occurs during the autumn season.
Benefits and Uses of Black-Eyed Susans
A versatile and vivid flower from the Sunflower family, showy black-eyed Susans look great along pathways, garden edges, in containers, and in bouquets. The flowers golden-yellow color brightens up any space in the summer and into fall. These plants have a long blooming season, displaying their cheery, cone-shaped flowers from June into October.
Nectar-insects like bees and butterflies love to pollinate in gardens with black-eyed Susans. They also attract seed-eating birds and are highly deer-resistant, working well as a border. Moderately aggressive, these wildflowers will not overtake other garden plants easily when given proper competition and less-favorable conditions.
Caring for Your Black-Eyed Susan Plants
Plant these sun-loving flowers in open areas that receive full to partial sun. They’ll thrive in full sun, but planting them in partial sunlight will help keep them from being overly aggressive when close to other plants. Black-eyed Susans prefer loose soil that drains well paired with semi-moist conditions. They will survive dry conditions once established but will die if overwatered. The preferable pH level for these sunny flowers is slightly acidic, but less than 6.8. For longer lasting blooms, remove dead flower heads and prune after flowering for a second bloom in the fall.
Black-Eyed Susan is a classic and easy to grow addition to any perennial garden. It comes in a range of colors from yellow to red and holds its plan from early summer throughout the fall. The black-Eyed Susan is native to North America and makes for an excellent source of visual interest when planted as part of a wildflower garden. It is especially popular among wildlife enthusiasts as its nectar attracts bees and butterflies.