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Gaillardia pulchella is often confused with:
Gaillardia x grandiflora Gaillardia X grandiflora
Plants that fill a similar niche:
Antirrhinum majus Antirrhinum majus
Rudbeckia hirta Rudbeckia hirta
Rudbeckia maxima Rudbeckia maxima

Firewheel Gaillardia pulchella

Previously known as:

  • Gaillardia bicolor var. drummondii
  • Gaillardia neomexicana
  • Gaillardia pulchella var. drummondii
  • Gaillardia villosa
Phonetic Spelling
gay-LAR-dee-ah pul-KEL-ah
Description

These flowers are prolific on the barrier islands and will grow in the soft sand along beach walkways. They are highly drought and salt tolerant.  They are now thoroughly naturalized from North Carolina to Florida, with North Carolina being its northern limit.

Plant seed in the fall by direct sowing and lightly raking in.  Provide constant moisture for good germination.  It grows well in containers, or mass plant it for some amazing warm colors in your landscape.  It works well in a borders, rock or cottage gardens, or let it naturalize in a meadow.

Insects, Diseases, and Other Plant Problems:  No serious problems but watch for aphids and thrips.  Indian Blanket Flower will not survive in water-logged soils.

Family Asteraceae (Compositae)

Quick ID Hints:

  • Erect herb with terminal, solitary heads
  • Enlarged, tubular flowers, red with yellow apices

Erect, pubescent, perennial herb 1.5-2' tall. 

Blooms summer to fall; utilized as cut flowers, planters, containers, bedding plants; withstands droughts well. 

Distinctive aster type herb with enlarged, bicolored disc flowers; bold colors similar to those utilized by native Americans in weaving Indian blankets. 

Prefers full sun; tolerant of most garden soils; tolerant light shade; no serious pest/disease problems.

Cultivars / Varieties:
Tags:
#red#sun#showy flowers#yellow#birds#heat tolerant#annual#summer#drought tolerant#orange#container plant#wildlife plant#wildflowers#nectar plant#salt tolerant#low maintenance#fall interest#cottage garden#mass planting#meadow#coastal#food source#long-lasting flowers#daisy-like#naturalizes#borders#self-seeding#warm color#fantz
 
Cultivars / Varieties:
Tags:
#red#sun#showy flowers#yellow#birds#heat tolerant#annual#summer#drought tolerant#orange#container plant#wildlife plant#wildflowers#nectar plant#salt tolerant#low maintenance#fall interest#cottage garden#mass planting#meadow#coastal#food source#long-lasting flowers#daisy-like#naturalizes#borders#self-seeding#warm color#fantz
  • Attributes:
    Genus:
    Gaillardia
    Species:
    pulchella
    Family:
    Asteraceae
    Uses (Ethnobotany):
    Teas made from the plant helped gastro-instestinal problems, skin disorders, and bathing in the tea provided pain relief to nursing mothers. The Kiowa people believed the plant brought good luck.
    Life Cycle:
    Annual
    Recommended Propagation Strategy:
    Seed
    Country Or Region Of Origin:
    Central & S. U.S.A. to N. Mexico
    Wildlife Value:
    Nectar from the flowers attracts butterflies, seeds attract goldfinches so consider leaving seed heads after flowering.
    Dimensions:
    Height: 1 ft. 0 in. - 2 ft. 0 in.
    Width: 0 ft. 10 in. - 1 ft. 0 in.
  • Whole Plant Traits:
    Plant Type:
    Annual
    Native Plant
    Wildflower
    Habit/Form:
    Clumping
    Erect
    Growth Rate:
    Rapid
    Maintenance:
    Low
    Texture:
    Coarse
  • Cultural Conditions:
    Light:
    Full sun (6 or more hours of direct sunlight a day)
    Partial Shade (Direct sunlight only part of the day, 2-6 hours)
    Soil Texture:
    Sand
    Soil pH:
    Neutral (6.0-8.0)
    Soil Drainage:
    Good Drainage
    Available Space To Plant:
    12 inches-3 feet
    NC Region:
    Coastal
    Usda Plant Hardiness Zone:
    2a, 2b, 3a, 3b, 4a, 4b, 5a, 5b, 6a, 6b, 7a, 7b, 8a, 8b, 9a, 9b, 10a, 10b, 11a, 11b
  • Flowers:
    Flower Color:
    Brown/Copper
    Gold/Yellow
    Orange
    Purple/Lavender
    Red/Burgundy
    Flower Inflorescence:
    Head
    Flower Value To Gardener:
    Long Bloom Season
    Long-lasting
    Showy
    Flower Bloom Time:
    Fall
    Spring
    Summer
    Flower Shape:
    Radial
    Flower Petals:
    7 - 20 petals/rays
    Flower Size:
    3-6 inches
    Flower Description:
    Showy long-lasting daisy-like flower heads appear from spring to the first frost. Flowers are orange-red rays with 3-toothed yellow tips 1"-2" across. Disk flowers in the center are purple-brown. A terminal head, solitary on elongate peduncles to 6" long, 1.5-2" diam.; receptable reddish to orangish-red pappus; involucral bracts green. Ray flowers to 3/4", few, red with yellow tips or red; disc flowers numerous, enlarged, tube funnel-shaped, red, lips yellow.
  • Leaves:
    Leaf Color:
    Gray/Silver
    Green
    Leaf Type:
    Simple
    Leaf Arrangement:
    Alternate
    Leaf Shape:
    Oblanceolate
    Oblong
    Leaf Margin:
    Entire
    Hairs Present:
    No
    Leaf Length:
    1-3 inches
    Leaf Description:
    Gray-green oblong to oblanceolate 3" long leaves. Alternate, simple, grayish-green, bluntly acute, attenuate, hirsute, oblong to oblanceolate; lower leaves 4.5-6" long, coarsely toothed to entire, short-petiolate to sessile; upper leaves reduced, 1.5-3" long, coarsely-toothed to entire, sessile, subclasping.
  • Stem:
    Stem Color:
    Green
    Stem Is Aromatic:
    No
    Stem Description:
    Upright stems have few leaves toward the top
  • Landscape:
    Landscape Location:
    Container
    Meadow
    Naturalized Area
    Landscape Theme:
    Butterfly Garden
    Children's Garden
    Cottage Garden
    Drought Tolerant Garden
    Rock Garden
    Design Feature:
    Border
    Mass Planting
    Attracts:
    Butterflies
    Songbirds
    Resistance To Challenges:
    Drought
    Heat
    Salt