Rudbeckia triloba

Brown-Eyed Susan

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Rudbeckia triloba, or the Brown-eyed Susan, is a biennial (short-lived perennial) plant that grows best in full sun and moist soil. This...

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Brown-eyed Susan flowers have bright yellow rays with brown center disks. They bloom over a long period, from July to October. This hardy species grows in a variety of soil types and tolerates heat, drought, and some shade. It grows best in full sun and moist soil. Brown-eyed Susan is taller, flowers later and longer, and has smaller flowers than Black-eyed Susan.

Although Rudbeckia triloba plants are short-lived biennials, they readily self-seed and naturalize.  Deadhead spent flowers to extend blooming; deadheading will also prevent any unwanted self-seeding. This species is an excellent choice for borders, wildflower meadows, pollinator gardens, and naturalized areas.

Wildlife Value: This plant provides nectar and pollen to native bees, butterflies, and other pollinators and is a larval host plant for butterfly and moth species, such as the Silvery Checkerspot butterfly (Chlosyne nycteis) and Wavy-lined Emerald moth (Synchlora aerata).  Its seeds are a food source for songbirds, such as American Goldfinches.

Plant Details:

Other Common Names: Thin-leaved Coneflower, Three-lobed Rudbeckia

Plant Type: Flower, Perennial

New Jersey Native: Yes

Bloom Times: Summer, Late Summer to Fall

Bloom Colors: Yellow

Deer Resistance: Some

Attracts Pollinators and Wildlife: Bees and Other Pollinators, Butterflies, Birds

Salt Tolerance: Unknown

Hardiness Zone: 6a, 6b, 7a, 7b

Physiographic Region: All Regions in NJ

Grows in Special Ecoregions: Barrier Island/Coastal, Pinelands

Soil Characteristics

Soil Type: Loam, Organic, Sandy, Clay

Soil Moisture: Moist

Soil pH: Slightly Acidic, Neutral

Light Needs of Plant

Optimal Light: Full Sun

Light Range: Full Sun, Partial Shade

Water Needs of Plant

Soil Moisture: Moist

Drought Tolerance: Medium

Size and Growth Rate

Height: 2 - 4 ft

Spread: 1 - 1.5 ft

Growth Rate: Fast