Rudbeckia is a genus of flowering plants in family Asteraceae, comprising about 23 species. The species are commonly known as Coneflowers or Black-eyed Susans. They are all native to North America and many species are cultivated in gardens for their beautiful and colorful summer flowers .
Rudbeckia, commonly known as Black-eyed Susan, Brilliant Coneflower, Eastern Coneflower, or Orange Coneflower, is a perennial plant, growing to 120 cm tall. It is native to eastern North America, comprising seven varieties. The stems are hairy, ridged, and dark green. Its leaves are dark green, sparsely but roughly haired, simple, and have serrate margins. The flowers are striking golden-yellow with a black-brown center. It is a good border plant and also is the parent of some fine plants, all with golden-yellow summer flowers. The seeds are produced in fruits called cypselae, 2-4 mm long, and have a short coroniform of 0.2 mm long. The ripe fruit is a favorite food of finches in winter.
The species are herbaceous, annual, biennial, or perennial; growing to 0.5 -3 m tall, with simple or branched stems. The flowers are produced in daisy-like inflorescences, with yellow or orange florets arranged in a prominent, cone-shaped head; 'cone-shaped' because the ray florets tend to point out and down as the flower head opens.
Rudbeckia species are food plants for larvae of some Lepidoptera species including Cabbage Moth and Dot Moth.
Plant Rodbeckia in sun or partial shade, in moisture-retentive but well-drained soil. Propagation is by seed in spring; or by division in spring or autumn. Pests are slugs and snails.