These bright, bushy plants have become one of our most popular garden flowers in recent years and it’s not surprising. With their masses of colourful blooms, ranging from shades of gold, bronze and mahogany, these half-hardy annuals have a long flowering period. Extremely versatile and members of the daisy family both bees and butterflies are strongly attracted to them.
They begin flowering in the middle of summer, but really get into their stride later in the season and last well into autumn, often continuing after many other plants in the garden have finished.
How to Sow and Grow Rudbeckia
Sow indoor, for surest results, 0.5cm(1.4in) deep, in trays of compost. Water well and place in a warm position, a temperature of 15-20oC (60-69oF) is ideal. Keep moist. Seedlings usually appear in 14-21 days. Transplant seedlings 5cm(2in) apart to other trays when large enough to handle. Grow on in cooler, but not cold conditions. Gradually accustom young plants to outside conditions (avoid frost), before planting out 30cm(1st) apart, when frosts are over.
Or sow outdoors for ease, where they are to flower, 1.5cm (1.2in)) deep directly into finely prepared soil which has already been watered. Thin seedlings as required. Water well until plants are established.
Rudbeckias grow perfectly in positions in either full sun or light shade. They need a fertile soil enriched with lots of organic matter, which holds plenty of moisture in spring and summer, but without becoming waterlogged.