Native to wet meadows and woodlands found in North America, rudbeckias are wonderful plants usually bearing daisy-like flowers on tall stems. Also known as coneflowers due to the prominent brown or green central cones they produce, these hardy perennials loved by pollinating insects are a great way to bring a touch of colour to the late summer/autumn garden. Try mixing with other perennials such as asters, heleniums and verbenas Bonariensis or interlace with grasses in a prairie-style border. They make fantastic cut flowers.
Plant in moderately fertile, well-drained, heavy soil in full sun or partial shade. Trim the flowering stems once the flowers are spent and cut back to ground level in autumn.
Rudbeckias are supplied in 9 cm pots. Always unpack on arrival and store in a cool place until ready to plant.
Potential problems, pests and diseases:
Snails and slugs:these pests enjoy munching on young shoots, stems, leaves and flowers. Watch out for damage!
Powdery mildews:these fungal diseases usually caused by planting in the shade or by poor air circulation can be seen in the form of white, powdery coating on the leaves. Cut off any infected material before disinfecting your scissors.