Black Eyed Susans - when will they appear?

Discussion in 'Annuals, Biennials, Perennials, Ferns and Bulbs' started by Mister Green, May 3, 2009.

  1. Mister Green

    Mister Green Active Member

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    I planted some Black Eyed Susans last year and they grew fairly well considering it was the first time I tried growing them from seeds. They are perennials, yes? When should they start reappearing from the ground? So far, there's nothing coming up as of May 3.
     
  2. Silver surfer

    Silver surfer Generous Contributor 10 Years

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  3. joclyn

    joclyn Rising Contributor

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    there are three types of bes: annual, biennial and perennial.

    annuals grow/bloom the first year and then die
    biennial's grow the first year and then bloom the second and then die
    perennials grow/bloom the first year (i think, might be bloom second year) and then continue to grow/bloom each year thereafter.

    all types will produce plenty of seeds - either for future plantings or as food for the birds that overwinter.

    i've got the biennial type and i do not see them growing at all yet...the coneflowers are already up, though, so the bes can't be far behind!
     
  4. Mister Green

    Mister Green Active Member

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    Well, the seed package says they're perennial. So does that mean they should be coming up from the ground already? Or is it still too early?
     
  5. joclyn

    joclyn Rising Contributor

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    whether perennial or biennial, if they're not up for me yet, i'd think that yours would be a little further behind due to you being in a more northern location.

    if they grew last year, then they should be back - they're pretty hardy so a rough winter shouldn't affect them (too much, that is). i'd give it a few more weeks yet before worrying that they didn't make it through the winter.
     
  6. Mister Green

    Mister Green Active Member

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    Thanks joclyn for the reply. We're north of you but probably in a warmer zone since we're in Vancouver on the west coast. But we did have a cold and snowy winter that didn't do any favors with some of the tender perennials.
     
  7. kaspian

    kaspian Active Member 10 Years

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    Maine coast, USA, zone 5
    If they were sold under the name "black-eyed susans," they are probably the biennial type, Rudbeckia hirta, no matter what the seed packet said. You have to leave the seed heads to dry and scatter seed for the next year's crop. I just leave them standing all winter -- it's something to look at in the snow, and birds sometimes feed on the seeds during the cold months.

    As long as you do this, and the plants are happy, you should have black-eyed susans forever. If your growing season is long enough, you may even see blooms in the same year the seedlings germinate.

    There is a perennial species, R. fulgida, that looks rather similar (though more compact and spreading) but is a true perennial. And there are many hybrids and selected strains sold as Gloriosa daisies. This may be what you bought, because they are sometimes said to be perennial -- and for all I know they might behave as perennials in some years, for some gardeners, in some favored climates. But they have never been anything but biennial for me.
     
  8. WesternWilson

    WesternWilson Active Member 10 Years

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    My black eyed susans (Rudbeckia) come up rather late compared to other perennials, and if they are in a shady spot, really late!

    I think I usually notice them about now...and the first leaves out are quite tiny, so are easy to miss in a crowded bed.

    Even later to emerge are my Echinacea. I always think they are gone and then one day...there they are!

    Hope your black eyed susans showed up...they are one of my favourite flowers and look fab paired with fall asters.
     
  9. Candy

    Candy Active Member

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    Location:
    Burnaby, B.C. Zone 7ish
    My neighbour and I have two different varieties of Blackeyed Susans (both grown from seed, started 3 years ago). Hers are the rounded, fuzzy leaves, and mine have the sharper, smooth leaves. Both of ours are up now, between six and ten inches tall.
     

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