Host: Gary Bachman, Ornamental Horticulture Specialist
During the mid-summer months gaillardia makes fantastic additions to the summer garden today on Southern Gardening.
Gaillardia is a native plant which few pests and with its palette of bright warm colors can really liven up the summer landscape. And to add to the interest and usefulness gaillardia is adapted to the entire state of Mississippi. In fact it’s common to see gaillardia growing wild in the most neglected and harsh conditions. The center of the flower typically are rosy red to purple with petals ranging from yellow and orange to coppery crimson. There are many selections to choose from. The flowers of Gallo Dark Bicolor have rust colored center cones surrounded by petals each having a dab or two of red and finishing with a yellow band. The bright and colorful flower colors will not fade in the intense heat and sunlight of our Mississippi summers. For those gardeners that love to have sunny yellow flowers the Mesa Yellow is for you. The flowers are generous measuring up to three inches in diameter. The entire flower is is a cheery bright yellow that seems to radiate color. The center cone is knobby having profuse, slender yellow petals Be sure to plant gaillardia in the full sun and once established for this plant is drought tolerant. Almost any type of soil is fine as long as it is well drained as Gaillardia does not like wet feet. Deadheading will help to promote more flowering, but I recommend leaving some of the fading flowers. The seed heads are lollipop-shaped and add color and textural interest through the growing season.
Gaillardia is perfect for full sun color border plantings with other flowering annuals and perennials. I’m horticulturist Gary Bachman for Southern Gardening.