Bright Star (Echinacea)
Latin Name: Rudbeckia
Item #: 903A
Perennial Approx. 25,000 seeds per oz/28 g
Most rudbeckias or gloriosa daisies are considered hardy annuals or tender perennials, the hardiest of all is its northern cousin, echinacea. Plants resemble rudbeckias and the large 3 in/8 cm blooms in mauve or white have large crested centers with single daisy blooms that are more cone shaped than the flatter gloriosa types. This is an excellent cut flower and seems to be more tolerant to late summer powdery mildew than some strains of gloriosa daisy. Plants usually flower during July and August the first year from a Mar. 15th indoor sowing and next season from an outdoor sowing in May.
CULTURE: For perennial plant sales sow Mar. 15th in 3 in.8 cm pots. Germinate seeds at 70°F/21°C for 15-20 days. Cover seed lightly with soil and firm. Water thoroughly. Most growers sow 4 seeds per pot, thin to one or two plants per pot. Sow outdoors in early May after dandelions and forsythia have bloomed. Thin plants 24 in/61 cm apart. Use rose dust to prevent mildews, starting at the same time as you would roses (in mid July). Cut back plants to about 8 in/20 cm above ground (no shorter) so that the plant above ground is tall enough to catch leaves and snow to protect the root system throughout the winter months.