How to Grow Golden Glow (Rudbeckia laciniata ‘Hortensia’)
Golden Glow is a popular flower found in Maine gardens. It can often be found along roadsides or near old abandoned homesteads. Although it is not a wildflower, it may appear to be one. These towering flowers can reach a height of 8 to 10 feet if they are not pinched to control their growth. Golden Glow is sometimes known as the outhouse plant as it was once a custom to plant Golden Glow near the outhouse to provide a privacy screen.
This impressive flower produces brilliant yellow blooms atop tall slender stems. The flowers may be either single or double petaled. Their height ranges from two feet to four feet or more depending on the cultivar. These easy-to-grow perennials return every year in large clumps adding bright color to the garden from mid summer until frost.
- Location: Golden Glow will grow in partially sunny areas where it receives 4 to 6 hours of direct sunlight a day, but prefers full sun. These delightful flowers create a dazzling display under the rays of the sun.
- Soil: Till the soil to a depth of 8 to 10 inches in the early spring. Remove roots, stones and other debris from the soil and rake the area smooth. Add generous amounts of organic matter, such as compost or aged manure, and mix it into the top six inches of the soil. Organic matter improves aeration, promotes good drainage and adds slow release nutrients to the soil.
- Planting: Sow Rudbeckia laciniata ‘Hortensia’ seeds to a depth of ½ inch, spaced 4 to 6 inches apart in the spring after the danger of frost has passed in your area. Cover the seeds with soil and firm down lightly to secure the seeds. Water thoroughly and keep soil moist until seedlings emerge in two to three weeks. You can also dig up a section of a golden glow from a friend or neighbor and replant it in your yard. Transplants typically become vigorous new plants very quickly.
- Watering: Reduce water to once or twice a week, or whenever the soil feels dry to the touch one inch below the surface. Golden glow tolerates dry soil and typically thrives under normal weather conditions in Maine.
- Considerations: Plant Golden Glow along fences or in the background of your flowerbed for a dramatic display of color. Dwarf varieties can be planted as borders or in the foreground of your flowerbed.
- Pinching: Golden Glow grows rapidly and will become stop heavy and floppy when it bloom. Pinching out new growth in June to force the plant to branch and become bushy will prevent it from growing too tall and will create a more attractive plant. When left to their own devices my Golden Glow flowers grow to heights of 8 or 9 feet or more and topple over with the first heavy rain.
- Division: Divide Golden Glow every 3 to 5 years in either the spring or fall to create new plants.