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Rudbeckia - The Coneflower
Generally there are three species grown in the UK they are;
bicolour; An annual that grows to around 600mm high producing 50mm diameter bi-coloured flowers with a black central cone from July to August.
hirta;(Black eyed Susie) A perennial, generally grown as an annual, that grows from 300-900mm high.
The 75mm diameter yellow flowers with a brown/purple central cone, are produced from August to October.
fulgida; A bushy perennial, that grows from 600- 900mm high.
The 60mm diameter yellow to orange flowers with a brown/purple central cone, are produced from July to September.
Grow Rudbeckias in any well-drained garden soil with a sunny aspect.
Most varieties will require staking in exposed areas.
Plant out perennial species approximately 500-600mm apart in October or March/April the following year.
Prior to planting dig in copious amounts of well rotted manure.
Dead head flowers regularly to encourage further flowering, cut the stems down to ground level in November.
Sow seeds of annual species in pots/trays of seed compost during March/April and place in a cold frame.
Prick out the seedlings, when large enough to handle, grow on, ready for planting out in May
Perennials can be treated the same as annuals but grown on until planting out time in October.