Growing Rudbeckia Flowers
Rudbeckia: Blooms Like Dazzling Sunshine on a Stick!
The rudbeckia flower is often called Black-Eyed Susan, marmalade gloriosa daisy, ox-eyed daisy, and cone flower plant. If you’re not that familiar with rudbeckias, you might mistake them for daisies. Rudbeckias have daisy-like golden yellow blooms that add a splash of color to any home garden.
These herbaceous perennial (which means, these plants grow back year after year) are also a well-known part of wildflower gardens. With proper dead-heading, their beautiful flowers will last for weeks during summer.
Rudbeckia plants grow 2-6 feet tall and can bush out 1-2 feet wide depending on the variety. The large, bright yellow blooms attract butterflies that certainly make a picturesque flower garden, especially during summer. Also, did you know that Rudbeckia’s seedheads attract birds, particularly goldfinches?
Most gardeners find this an amusing sight. Goldfinches love the seeds so much that if you let the last flowers go to seed, birds will find your garden.
If you’re wondering what companion plants are best for Rudbeckias, then daisy-like plants must top your list. Osteospermum and Echinacea are the best choices. But if you rather contrast Rudbeckia’s showy, huge blooms, go with plants that produce tiny flowers such as asters, gladiolus and liatris.
You can propagate Rudbeckia through the seeds of the flower or by purchasing bedding plants/young transplants from garden nurseries in the spring.
Propagating from seeds requires two things: Ensure that the seeds will germinate and make them become disease and pest resistant. Now, if you want an easier method then you can purchase young rudbeckia seedlings from your local garden nursery for transplanting in your garden or lawn. Here, your responsibility is to carefully transport the plants. Make sure not to break or injure the stems.
Purchasing seedlings from garden nursery in your locality also guarantees that the Rudbeckia plants will be highly resistant to unfavorable conditions in your area such as excessive rainfall and drought. This will also ensure that the plants can grow well in your local climate.
How To Grow Rudbeckia Flowers
Although the Rudbeckia flower tolerates average soils, it will grow best in rich fertile and well-drained soil. You can improve the soil condition in your backyard by mixing it with compost or manure before planting. Sow the seeds and lightly cover them with soil. Do not plant the root ball deeper than the ground level or the plant will rot. Spacing must be at least a foot apart. After planting, put a 2-inch layer of mulch around your Rudbeckias.
Rudbeckias love full sun. So if you want the best results, make sure the plants receive direct sunlight. Also, whether you propagated your Rudbeckias from seeds or by young transplants, it is important to water them throughout the first few weeks after propagation.
Although most modern cultivars nowadays already have sturdy stems, some varieties of Rudbeckia may still need staking. As mentioned earlier, deadheading can greatly help in extending the blooming season.
The biggest problem for Rudbeckia is a fungal disease called powdery mildew. It has quite distinctive symptoms. Infected plants have white powdery spots on the stems and leaves, making the leaves appear fuzzy and lance-shaped. Your Rudbeckia plant can catch this disease if it is not situated in full sun location or if the garden spot is overcrowded.