En Espa—ol

Q. Who is Mr. Smarty Plants?

A: There are those who suspect Wildflower Center volunteers are the culpable and capable culprits. Yet, others think staff members play some, albeit small, role. You can torture us with your plant questions, but we will never reveal the Green Guru's secret identity.

Help us grow by giving to the Plant Database Fund or by becoming a member

Did you know you can access the Native Plant Information Network with your web-enabled smartphone?

Share

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants is a free service provided by the staff and volunteers at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center.

Search Smarty Plants
    
 
See a list of all Smarty Plants questions
Can't find the answer in our existing FAQs, submit a question to Mr. Smarty Plants.
Need help with plant identification, visit the plant identification page.
 
rate this answer
1 rating

Wednesday - January 20, 2010

From: Beaumont, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Wildflowers
Title: Is Rudbeckia hirta annual, biennial... or what?
Answered by: Jackie OKeefe

QUESTION:

The desciption for Rudbeckia hirta says it is biennial and blooms the second year then further down the page it says it is an annual, which is it? Will I see blooms the first or second year?

ANSWER:

There are several factors which can determine a plant's longevity. Rudbeckia hirta (blackeyed Susan) thrives in a wide range of climates and soils. In the wild, having the adaptability to complete its life cycle in one season ensures survival in some environments, while being able to mature for a year before blooming promotes survival in other situations. Since weather conditions can vary considerably year-to-year, this adaptability is one of the qualities that makes  Rudbeckia hirta (blackeyed Susan) such a wide-ranging plant.

In Texas' warm climate, if your Rudbeckia hirta (blackeyed Susan) plant is sufficiently mature and gets enough rain/water it will almost certainly bloom this season. If it gets enough moisture through the heat of the summer, it will probably live for another year. If the spent flowers drop seeds, seedlings will sprout with the fall rains for a new generation of plants next year.

According to the  USDA's PDF Fact Sheet :

Adaptation and Distribution
Black-eyed Susan is naturalized in most of the states east of Kansas and the bordering areas of Canada. It is adapted throughout the Northeast on soils with a drainage classification range from well-drained to somewhat poorly drained. It will perform acceptably on droughty soils during years with average or above rainfall, but best growth is achieved on sandy, well drained sites. It is winter hardy in areas where low temperatures are between -30 ° and -20 °F.


Rudbeckia hirta

Rudbeckia hirta

 

 

More Wildflowers Questions

Germination of bluebonnet seeds in Hempstead, TX
April 01, 2008 - We scattered 20 lbs of bluebonnet seeds on our property near Hempstead. Only about 10 plants have come up even though on another part of the property we have thousands. It is well drained and in sun....
view the full question and answer

Smarty Plants on Rohelís saxifrage
May 11, 2005 - Hi, can you help? Do you know what is a plant named: Rohelís saxifrage? "Bulgaria - Cenral Balkan National Park - Kozya Stena (Chamois Wall) Reserve was established on December 22, 1987. With an a...
view the full question and answer

Wildflower preparation for winter
October 22, 2009 - I live in Onieda New York and I would like to know what do I do with my wild flowers before winter so they look great next year?
view the full question and answer

Viability of seeds that have not come up
December 06, 2005 - I planted some wildflower seeds per instructions and they are not coming up. Should they? or will they come up in spring?
view the full question and answer

Highway construction in wildflower areas from Kingsland TX
April 22, 2014 - I see no other link to contact about this, except for you. Maybe you can direct me. I just drove Hwy 281 South and a lot of road construction is being done. For many years that I've noticed, there ...
view the full question and answer

Smarty Plants's Facebook profile Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.

Mr. Smarty Plants wants you to be his Facebook friend. Click the Facebook icon to add yourself to Mr. Smarty Plants list of friends.
E-NEWSLETTER | BECOME A MEMBER | DONATE NOW | MEDIA | SITEMAP | STAFF
© 2015 Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center