When and Where to Plant Black Eyed Susans (Rudbeckia)
Light: All varieties of Rudbeckia will thrive in full sun. However, some varieties, especially the Sweet Black-eyed Susan (Rudbeckia subtomentosa) and the perennial black-eyed Susan (Rudbeckia ‘Goldsturm’) will also take partial shade.
Soil: All Rudbeckias tolerate a wide range of soil types, from clay to loam. If you have very sandy soil which dries out easily, add organic matter to help the soil retain moisture. If you have a very water-retentive soil, choose Sweet Black-eyed Susans (Rudbeckia subtomentosa).
Spacing: Plant Black-Eyed Susans about 18” apart.
Planting Rudbeckia from Seed: Sprinkle the seeds on top of regular seed starting mix about six weeks before the last frost date. Do not cover the seed as they need light to germinate. Plant your seedlings outdoors after any danger of frost has passed.
Planting Rudbeckia from Plants: Providing all danger of frost has passed at your location, set your new plants out as soon as possible after you receive them. If additional frost is anticipated hold your plants in a sunny window and keep well-watered until it is safe to plant them outdoors.
- Prepare the site by removing existing weeds and loosening the soil.
- Make a hole a few inches wider that your young plant;
- Place your Rudbeckia in the hole (disturb the roots with your fingers if they're coming in thick), backfill with soil, tamp gently and water well.