Rudbeckia hirta. At 30–100 cm (12–39") tall, this North American native annual wildflower is immediately familiar, and conjures a sense of the heat of mid-summer. Dark brown cone centres are surrounded by pure yellow petals in flowers 5-8cm (2-3") across. Black Eyed Susan is a common name shared by many plants, but this is the annual that is native to the northeastern United States. This plant has been used by a number of First Nations as a medicinal poultice to treat a number of infections, including cold and flu. You'll love the bright look of this plant in mass plantings or in larger containers.
This annual Rudbeckia is commonly known as Black Eyed Susan, but also answers to such folksy names as Brown Betty, Brown Daisy, Brown Eyed Susan, Golden Jerusalem, Poor-land Daisy, Yellow Daisy, and Yellow Ox-Eye Daisy. This wonderful, fun flower comes in so many shapes, sizes and colours. Continue reading below for tips on how to grow Rudbeckia from seed.
Season & Zone
Exposure: Full sun
Sow indoors 6-8 weeks before last frost, or direct sow about 2 weeks before last frost. If starting indoors, provide bright light and maintain a soil temperature of 21-25°C (70-75°F). Expect germination in 5-21 days.
Sow seeds on the surface of the soil. Thin or transplant to stand 30cm (12″) apart. In hot summers, some afternoon shade is appreciated.
Top dress with a thin layer of well rotted manure once a year. Keep watered in hot weather, and deadhead regularly. Plants may self-sow, which should be encouraged.