Friday's Flowers ~ Gaillardia



Indian Blanket

This is Gaillardia, also know by other names such as Indian blanket. It boasts not only a stunning display of color but it can survive almost anywhere. I have seen them thrive in the sand and salt of the coast and here in my own area of hard pan dirt.This amazing flower can be seen as far north as Canada. It is drought tolerant and is native to northern Mexico.


Perennial

Gaillardia is a perennial so once established it needs little care. The nice thing about this flower is the amount of insects it feeds. It is the food plant of bees and butterflies. It is a larval host to the bordered patch and painted schinia moth.


By Unknown author - Entry on Schinia volupia at BOLD Systems - Image, Copyrighted free use, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=15168715

From Wiki;

The branching stem of Gaillardia pulchella is hairy and upright, growing to 60 cm (2 ft) tall. The leaves are alternate, mostly basal, 4–8 cm long, with edges smooth to coarsely toothed or lobed. It has a hairy stem, simple or branched near the base, where the leaves are essentially located towards the bottom of the plant.

The pinwheel, daisy-like inflorescences are 4–6 cm in diameter, vividly colored with red, orange and yellow and is surrounded by 10 to 20 fleurons ligulate three lobes. The central disc florets of the flower head tend to be more red-violet, with the outer ray florets being yellow. In one variety, almost the entire flower is red, with only the barest tips of the petals touched with yellow. It blooms practically year-round in some areas, but more typically in summer to early fall.

The fruit is an achene, almost pyramidal, hairy, and prolonged by a pappus 5 to 8 mm in length.



I love that these are hardy and bring a wild beauty to both urban or suburban environments. Near pathways it may need to be restrained as it will lay down or over hang the path. But is is enchanting to leave them as is! With this in the garden, you are sure to get to see amazing insects and get the chance at photographing them for your Instagram feed or art show.


Native bee on gaillardia
Native bee on gaillardia bloom


What are you waiting for? Plant it!





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