Today had the full spectrum of driving rain to sunshine.  The weather didn’t stop Larry H. and Peg from heading out for garden clean-up and mulching.  Lloyd was also out there to continue mulching the main parking lot islands.  Marv and Terry did some work out in the gardens which became quite damp quickly this morning.  Dr. Gredler, Alan and Gary all worked on painting while Ron Y. was priming some new Adirondack chairs.  Bob C. and Gene sanded benches for re-staining while Dave and Vern continued assembling new Adirondack chairs (for sale at our Cottage Garden Gallery!).  Dick H. had some projects.  Gary worked on some new signs and Larry O. popped in for some consultation on repairs to our endloader.  Kay worked on preparing plant sale labels and we also saw Barry B., Chuck S. and many others.
Above is the ‘City Garden’ black-eyed Susan (Rudbeckia fulgida) which is one of the many excellent, mid-height selections of this impactful perennial.  While there are many species of Rudbeckia in a wide range of heights, this focus is on the “knee and thigh high” selections.  All of these will thrive in full sun or part sun and are quite drought tolerant once established.  Excellent for pollinators, the perennial rudbeckias will expand to form colonies and aren’t too picky about soils.  Be warned that control and division may be in order when they are the “most happy”!  Blooms will frequently start in July and last until late August.  See further down for some nice combinations utilizing the flower power of these excellent species and varieties.
 Deam’s coneflower (Rudbeckia fulgida var. deamii)
Missouri coneflower (Rudbeckia missouriensis)
‘Goldsturm’ black-eyed Susan (Rudbeckia fulgida var. sullivantii) – above and two below


 ‘Little Goldstar’ black-eyed Susan (Rudbeckia fulgida var. sullivantii)
 ‘Pot of Gold’ black-eyed Susan (Rudbeckia fulgida)
Viette’s Little Suzy black-eyed Susan (Rudbeckia fulgida ‘Blovi’)
the photo above and all below showcase the summer value of these long-blooming and tough black-eyed Susans
the garden of Cindy B. (above)