- Common Name(s):
- Narrow leaf sunflower, Swamp sunflower
- Annuals, Native Plants, Wildflowers
This native annual is a member of the Asteraceae or sunflower family and is a favorite of gardeners. It has deep green sandpapery, simple narrow leaves and it blooms profusley with happy yellow flowers from late summer to fall. Prune plants back in June for a bushier appearence when it blooms, but over all it is a low maintenance plant. Narrow-leaf sunflowers are salt-tolerant and can tolerate water-logged soil so they are great for coastal gardens. Under ideal conditions it can become weedy spreading by undergound rhizomes. Save seed from your favorite plants to plant next year. Plants grow very rapidly so there is no need to start seeds indoors.
Seasons of Interest:
Bloom: Summer, July-August
Wildlife Value: It is a great late-nectar plant for butterflies. Birds are attracted to seeds so leave standing dead flowers into the winter as natural bird feeders. Members of the genus Helianthus support the following specialized bees: Andrena (Callandrena s.l.) accepta, Andrena (Callandrena s.l.) aliciae, Andrena (Callandrena s.l.) helianthi, Melissodes (Eumelissodes) agilis, Dieunomia (Dieunomia) heteropoda, Megachile (Sayapis) pugnata, and Paranthidium (Paranthidium) jugatorium.
Insects Diseases and Other Plant Problems: Caterpillars and beetles often chew on the foliage but seldom cause enough damage to warrent management. Rust, leaf fungal spots and powdery mildew are somewhat common. Beacause stems can be flimsy, plants may need to be staked, especially if planted in a windy location.
- Late summer, fall
- Full sun to partial shade
- Yellow, red, mahogany, bicolor rays with brown to purple center disk
- 6-10 ft
- 1.5-3 ft
- Flower Color:
- Bright yellow
- Up to 7 in., very narrow, rough, sandpapery, simple, hairy leaves pointed at the tip; hairy stems; often has untoothed, stalkless cluster of smaller leaves in the axils
- 2-3 in. flowers with a purplish brown disk and 10-20 petals; narrow, pointed, hairy bracts
- Upright, can be leggy in partial shade
- Sandy woods, wet prairies, thickets, low pinelands, flat woods, moist road shoulders, bogs, swales, ditches. Prefers moist soils and full sun but tolerates poor soils on the dry side.
- full sun, partial shade
- Sunflower seeds
- sandy, salty, water-logged
- mountains, piedmont, coastal plain
- United States
- Life Cycle:
NCCES plant id: 2858