Ratibida columniferaItem #6971 USDA Hardiness Zone: 4 - 11
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A colorful addition to natural looking, easy-care borders. The drooping, deep red, gold-trimmed petals and columnar center have the effect of a Mexican sombrero. A native to the Midwestern United States, perfectly at home in dry land prairie meadows, and native gardens. An herbaceous perennial.
- DetailBotanical Pronunciation:ra-ti-BI-da co-lum-NI-feraPlant type:PerennialDeciduous/evergreen:HerbaceousSunset climate zones:1 - 24, 26 - 43Growth rate:FastAverage landscape size:Upright habit; quickly reaches 24 to 30 in. tall, 12 in. wide.Foliage color:GreenBlooms:SummerFlower color:YellowDesign IdeasA super addition to the perennial border. Spot into sunny mixed plantings for fiery color. A perfect choice for the native and wild garden, particularly in the dryland prairie meadow. Integrates very well with southwestern natives and xeriscape gardens. A nectar source for wildlife and butterfly gardens.Companion PlantsScotch Broom (Cytisus); Yarrow (Achillea); Coneflower (Echinacea); Little Bluestem (Schizachyrium); Russian Sage (Perovskia)
- CareCare InformationGrows easily in average to lean, well-drained soils. Avoid heavy, wet clay. Shelter from harsh afternoon sun in hottest regions. Water deeply, regularly during the first growing season to establish an extensive root system. Once established, reduce frequency; tolerates moderate drought. Fertilize before new spring growth.Light Needs:Partial to full sunWatering Needs:Once established, water occasionally; more in extreme heat.
- History & LoreHistory:This native of the Midwestern prairie grassland tends to occur in the drier part of the range. This flower is a member of the Composite family which is the largest, containing 900 genera and 10,000 different species. This genus classified first as Lepachys by Constantino Rafinesque-Schmaltz 1784-1842, professor of natural history in Lexington, Kentucky. It was he who later reclassified the plant into genus Ratibida, but why he chose the odd name remains unknown. This plant is often confused with the similar genus Rudbeckia and was for a time classified among them. Its current species was given by Elmer Wooton of Arlington, Virginia and his associate Paul Standley of the Chicago Natural History Museum. The name describing the central seed cone of the flower that elongates as it matures.Lore:Native Americans created a medicinal tea of this plant's stems and leaves to relieve skin pain and snakebites.