Rudbeckia laciniata (Green-Headed Coneflower)

USDA-NRCS PLANTS Database / Britton, N.L., and A. Brown. 1913. An illustrated flora of the northern United States, Canada and the British Possessions. 3 vols. Charles Scribner’s Sons, New York. Vol. 3: 473.

Where Commonly Found: Floodplains, forests, shores of wetland, rivers and lakes, CT, MA, ME, NH, NY, RI, VT.
How to Identify:
(For unfamiliar words: Wikipedia Glossary of Botanical Terms.)
Go Botany Key to Rudbeckia laciniata.
Missouri Botanical Garden webpage for Rudbecika laciniata.
Flower Type:  Daisy-like flower head is 2″-3″ across, globoid central cone or tubular disk florets, starting light green and ripening yellow, surrounded by 6-12 golden rays. There are 8-15 light green, oblong-ovate, hairless to hairy, floral bracts at the base of each flowerhead.  Flower time is August – September.
Leaf Arrangement: 
Alternate leaves around a circular, glabrous (or sometimes glabrous), light green stem that branches occasionally in the upper half.
Leaf Type: 
Large, up to 12″ by 12″, decreasing in size up the stem.  Lower to middle leaves exhibit 3-7 elliptic to ovate lobes, smooth to coarsely dentate margins, with some terminal lobes subdivided into 2 small lobes.  Lowest leaves are pale to medium green, glabrous to barely hair, and may be pinnate with a pair of basal leaflets and a lobed terminal leaflet while the upper leaves on flower stems are dark green, hairless, much smaller and lanceolate to ovate with no lobes.
Height:  2′ – 9′  
Seed Collection:  Disk florets develop into oblongoid achene with a crown of blunt teeth at the top.  Let seed head develop and dry out, then cut off the cone and store in a jar until the seeds fall out.

Attracts:  Bees, Butterflies, Birds
Use:  Naturalizing, spreads through underground roots.
Light:  Sun to Shade
Hardiness Zone:  3 to 9 USDA Zone Map
Soils:  Medium, Moist
Notes:  In the wild Green-Headed Coneflower can get quite tall but in the garden setting, tends to maintain 3′-4′.  Nice for late flowering in a naturalizing garden setting.
Native to all US except Oregon, Nevada and California.  Biota of North America Program (BONAP) – North America Plant Atlas (NAPA).

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