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Black-eyed Susan Rudbeckia fulgida

Other Common Name(s):

Other plants called Black-eyed Susan:

Phonetic Spelling
rud-BEK-ee-a FUL-gih-duh
Description

Black-eyed Susan is an erect herbaceous perennial that may grow 2 to 3 feet tall. The many yellow daisy-like flowers with a brownish-purple center first mature in early summer and continue into the fall. A rosette of leaves that originate at the base of the stem persists through the winter, creating an attractive winter ground cover. Leave the seed heads on for the birds. Remove floral stalks after booms spent for lush rosette of green leaves. 

Blackeyed Susans are easy to grow, thriving in any but soggy soils. It does best in full sun but tolerates partial shade. It also bears up under hot, humid summers and, once established, will tolerate drought. The plant spreads by underground stems called rhizomes to form large clumps. Propagation can be done by division in the spring or fall, or it can be propagated by seed. It is utilized for perennial beds, backgrounds, in pollinator gardens, in naturalized areas, and borders. Staking may be required for large heads.

Cultivars of this plant are usually what is sold in garden centers.

Quick ID Hints:

  • Erect herbs with basal rosette green leaves
  • Heads with brown-black, flattened domes
  • Ray flowers in single row, yellow or orange

Diseases, Insects, and Other Plant Problems:

This plant has pest and disease problems.
 

Profile Video:
See this plant in the following landscape:
Cultivars / Varieties:
  • 'Early Bird Gold'
  • 'Goldsturm'
    Larger flowers, slightly shorter, star-shaped
  • 'Viette's Little Suzy'
    10-15 inches tall
'Early Bird Gold', 'Goldsturm', 'Viette's Little Suzy'
Tags:
#gold#sun#yellow#partial shade#perennial#wildlife plant#yellow flowers#low maintenance#fall interest#herb garden#food source#cpp#fire#medium flammability#NC native#summer flowers#deer resistant#daisy-like#native garden#American goldfinches#borders#self-seeding#pollinator plant#native wildflower#wildflower garden#fantz#food source fall#bird friendly#butterfly friendly#HS302
 
Cultivars / Varieties:
  • 'Early Bird Gold'
  • 'Goldsturm'
    Larger flowers, slightly shorter, star-shaped
  • 'Viette's Little Suzy'
    10-15 inches tall
'Early Bird Gold', 'Goldsturm', 'Viette's Little Suzy'
Tags:
#gold#sun#yellow#partial shade#perennial#wildlife plant#yellow flowers#low maintenance#fall interest#herb garden#food source#cpp#fire#medium flammability#NC native#summer flowers#deer resistant#daisy-like#native garden#American goldfinches#borders#self-seeding#pollinator plant#native wildflower#wildflower garden#fantz#food source fall#bird friendly#butterfly friendly#HS302
  • Attributes:
    Genus:
    Rudbeckia
    Species:
    fulgida
    Family:
    Asteraceae
    Life Cycle:
    Perennial
    Recommended Propagation Strategy:
    Division
    Seed
    Country Or Region Of Origin:
    Eastern United States
    Distribution:
    AL , AR , CT , DC , DE , FL , GA , IL , IN , KY , MA , MD , MI , MO , MS , NC , NJ , NY , OH , OK , PA , SC , TN , TX , VA , WI , WV
    Fire Risk Rating:
    medium flammability
    Wildlife Value:
    Flowers are very attractive to butterflies. Songbirds, especially American goldfinches, eat the seeds in the fall.
    Play Value:
    Wildlife Food Source
    Particularly Resistant To (Insects/Diseases/Other Problems):
    This plant is occasionally damaged by deer but has been found to be moderately resistant.
    Dimensions:
    Height: 2 ft. 0 in. - 3 ft. 0 in.
    Width: 1 ft. 0 in. - 2 ft. 0 in.
  • Whole Plant Traits:
    Plant Type:
    Herb
    Native Plant
    Perennial
    Wildflower
    Woody Plant Leaf Characteristics:
    Broadleaf Evergreen
    Habit/Form:
    Clumping
    Growth Rate:
    Rapid
    Maintenance:
    Low
    Texture:
    Coarse
  • Cultural Conditions:
    Light:
    Full sun (6 or more hours of direct sunlight a day)
    Soil Texture:
    Clay
    Shallow Rocky
    Soil Drainage:
    Good Drainage
    Moist
    Occasionally Dry
    Available Space To Plant:
    12 inches-3 feet
    NC Region:
    Coastal
    Mountains
    Piedmont
    USDA Plant Hardiness Zone:
    3a, 3b, 4a, 4b, 5b, 5a, 6a, 6b, 7a, 7b, 8a, 8b, 9b, 9a
  • Fruit:
    Display/Harvest Time:
    Fall
  • Flowers:
    Flower Color:
    Black
    Gold/Yellow
    Orange
    Flower Inflorescence:
    Head
    Flower Value To Gardener:
    Good Cut
    Long Bloom Season
    Showy
    Flower Bloom Time:
    Fall
    Summer
    Flower Shape:
    Radial
    Flower Petals:
    7 - 20 petals/rays
    Flower Size:
    1-3 inches
    Flower Description:
    Ten to twenty brilliant yellow-orange ray florets (1 to 3 inches wide) surrounding a purple-brown central disk. They aprear to droop apically and are in one series. Disc flowers are obscure and yellowish. Inflorescence is a terminal head with a flattened dome receptacle that is brownish-black in color.
  • Leaves:
    Woody Plant Leaf Characteristics:
    Broadleaf Evergreen
    Leaf Color:
    Green
    Leaf Value To Gardener:
    Long-lasting
    Showy
    Leaf Type:
    Simple
    Leaf Arrangement:
    Alternate
    Rosulate
    Leaf Shape:
    Lanceolate
    Ovate
    Leaf Margin:
    Dentate
    Hairs Present:
    Yes
    Leaf Length:
    3-6 inches
    Leaf Width:
    1-3 inches
    Leaf Description:
    Ovate to oval to ovate lanceolate, basal rosette leaves to 5 inches long and half as wide. Lower leaves are toothed with prominent veins. Covered with bristly hairs when young. They are petiolate. Cauline leaves are elliptic to lanceolate, acute, cuneate, and short-petiole to sessile.
  • Stem:
    Stem Color:
    Green
    Stem Is Aromatic:
    No
    Stem Form:
    Straight
    Stem Surface:
    Hairy (pubescent)
    Stem Description:
    The stem is branched with bristly hairs.
  • Landscape:
    Landscape Location:
    Meadow
    Naturalized Area
    Landscape Theme:
    Butterfly Garden
    Cottage Garden
    Native Garden
    Pollinator Garden
    Rain Garden
    Design Feature:
    Border
    Specimen
    Attracts:
    Butterflies
    Pollinators
    Songbirds
    Resistance To Challenges:
    Deer
    Drought
    Dry Soil
    Pollution