Friday, August 5, 2011

A Simply Spectacular Summer Bloomer for Tennessee Gardens

Always looking for great summer plants that can withstand our Middle Tennessee extreme heat and drought conditions I am excited when I find good ones like cutleaf coneflowers ( Rudbeckia lacinata) 'Hortensia' and 'Autumn Sun'. These two coneflowers are coneflowers that shine in the severe conditions of mid-summer in Middle Tennessee. They are the tall yellow flowers on the right side of the above picture. Let's take a closer look at the garden.
As you can tell the cutleaf coneflowers grow very tall. Also looking at these pictures you can see the coneflowers grow in part sun/shade. I estimate they get perhaps three hours (if they are lucky) of sun per day. Still, they do fine and make a nice backdrop for the rest of the Non-Pool Garden. I have them paired with 'Adagio' ornamental grass, coneflowers, sedums and asters. The 'Limelight' hydrangeas you see in the picture are further down the hill along with a few other prairie flowers and shrubs.
The majority of this clump is of the 'Hortensia' variety. That is they are double coneflowers. These are heirloom plants and many folks plant them to hide things in the yard; like outhouses. For me they remind me of prairie flowers and make a great big impact in this garden. Butterflies love these coneflowers and I have not found mine to be bothered by any pests or diseases. Mine do occasionally need a drink of water; which I do not begrudge since our temperatures have consistently been in the 90s and we've had no rain in several weeks. 

I just love these sunny yellow plants....

in the garden....

I forgot to say, these coneflowers are about 6 feet tall and may get taller in more sun. They spread easily; which is good. Transplanting when fully grown can be tricky as I've found the best time to move these is in early spring once they sprout up. 

Words and Photos Property of In the Garden Blog Team, In the Garden


  1. I wanted to let you know your post was
    so beautiful that it is featured on
    WebGarden today. Our readers enjoy
    getting ideas and inspiration. I hope
    many will follow your blog after visiting.
    Thanks for sharing your gardening talents!

  2. Thanks Brooke! How very wonderful to be featured on Web Garden!

  3. Wonderful examples of plants that can stand up to our harsh summers. :)

  4. What a great plant to have Tina!

  5. Tina, I don't know what it is but I have a thing for tall plants! They just demand your attention. I love the way you have displayed the bottles BTW.

  6. Wow, those cutleaf coneflowers DO get mighty tall! Glancing at the first photo, I somehow missed them (?!) and thought the hydrangea was gonna be the bloomer in question. :)

  7. Such a tall and pretty day glowing beauty! Gotta love those drought thriving plants in the garden. As I type I see the sprinkler working away in my garden. Gee, where is the rain???

    Yep, I dont see the yellow in the first pic as well. Some of your pictures are loaded so large that the entire pic does not show on my screen. Me thinks one must have the long (wide) screen to see it all. Just a guess....

  8. Good Morning All.
    Another hot one here. Plants & people are suffering. Will be glad when it cools off.
    Tina that is a spectacular garden. I love those tall yellow goodies. I too thought it would be the hydrangea. All are beautiful.

  9. As I looked at the second picture I kept thinking how sunny those beauties were and then you used the same word so I guess sunny it is.

  10. I had the species variety in Virginia and it does get quite tall!! The goldfinches love it!! I am not familiar with Hortensia, love doubles! Which ever one you would want in a garden, they thrive! (I don't have an outhouse to hide....but would be fun to find a place to plant them in my new digs)

  11. Coneflowers are a must for the summer. Mine in the back look great BUT the ones in the front...the leaves all turned brown. Cut them down hope it's ok.

    What I really want to know is what is the tall white flowering shrub in your first picture. I've seen them around here and they look great for landscaping but have no clue what they are.

  12. Hi Tina,
    They seem like a great fit for your garden. I like how tall they are! They are surely a butterfly or bee magnet!

  13. I just love coneflowers and these are amazing! They look great in your garden. Thanks for introducing me to this variety.

  14. They're spectacular and they look wonderful with your blue bottles. gail

  15. At first I thought they were hydrangeas but the bloom puzzled me. Thanks so much. This plant goes on my list !

  16. Large masses of single plants have always seemed so perfect to me. Nicely done! You wouldn't know it's August in the South from your photos.

  17. I've never seen that particular variety, and you're right, it sure is TALL. Very bright and sunny. It looks good with your wine bottle garden. My little stone mosaic birdhouse you admired definitely will be staying inside safe and sound.

  18. I'll try those tall rudbeckia next year, on the slope behind my Joe Pye. I've had such good luck with the hirta this year ... doing better than my fulgida. The rabbits and deer do a bit of sampling, but I still have enough blooms to enjoy.

  19. I've been trying to find out what these were. Thank you for your photos and descriptions. Lovely !

    1. You are very welcomed. And I'm so glad you took the time to let me know I helped you out. Enjoy your day!