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For Your Garden - September 2018

 
Native plants provide beauty as well as food and shelter for wildlife. Native species are adapted to the Illinois climate. They require little or no watering and are resistant to drought, insects and most diseases. Because they are perennials, you can welcome their presence year after year.
 
sweet black-eyed Susan Rudbeckia subtomentosa
Photo © 2018, Gerald D. Tang
 
Sweet black-eyed Susan, also known as fragrant coneflower or sweet coneflower, is found in prairies, open woods and thickets statewide. A single plant may attain a height of up to 48 inches. This member of the aster family has stems that are hairy on their upper portions and smooth nearer the base. The lower leaves have three divisions while the upper leaves are entire. The flower heads are yellow (ray flowers) with dark centers (disk flowers). Several flower heads, each on its own stalk, are produced at the top of the plant. Flowers are generally present from July through September. Pollinators are attracted to the pollen and nectar of the flowers.
 
Classification and taxonomy are based on Mohlenbrock, Robert H. 2014. Vascular flora of Illinois: A field guide. Fourth edition. Southern Illinois University Press, Carbondale. 536 pp.
 

 Native Plant Information

 
 
For more information about native Illinois plants, including where to purchase them and planting guides, view the following publications at our publications page. You can access more information on the Schoolyard Habitat Action Grant page, too.