Gaillardia flowers (Blanket Flowers) of Gallardia xgrandiflora blooms profusely in dry, sunny sites and attracts butterflies to your garden. Find facts and information on growing Gaillardia varieties.
Gaillardia flowers are daisylike in appearance and will reach 3-5” across and are bright yellow with a red base and a mahogany central disk. Flowers appear from early summer into early autumn. The flowers are popular because they also attract butterflies and also are great as cut flowers for fresh arrangements.
These short lived flowers add cheerful color to the border or container plantings. Be sure to deadhead blooms to stimulate reblooming. Good companion plants include’ Snowbank’ white boltonia, threadleaf coreopsis, and creeping zinnia.
Facts on Growing Blanket Flowers
Gaillardia grows in Zones 3-8 with the plant reaching 36” h x 18”w. This plant is a perennial with an upright growth pattern that prefers to grow in full sun. Provide well-drained soil but tolerates soil with low fertility. The preferred pH is 5.5-7.0.
Plant 18” apart in spring or fall. Apply slow-release granular plant food at time of planting or begin using water-soluble plant food 3 weeks after planting in spring. Cease feeding 6-8 weeks prior to the first frost date. Water deeply when the soil is dry. Apply vegetative mulch in summer, about 3”, to help retain soil moisture.
Cut the plant back hard in late summer to early fall to stimulate fall bloom and new foliage growth. Do not feed at this time as new growth is susceptible to frost damage. The plants will overwinter better if they are not cut back after frost. Trim any damaged foliage in early spring.
Propagation is done by dividing in spring and fall. Dig around the root clump and lift up. Seed-grown plants will flower intermittently during the first season, with greater growth the second season. Sprinkle seeds over the soil mix and leave exposed to light. Do not cover the seeds. Thoroughly moisten and keep moist, not soggy, until sees germinate. Germination occurs in 5-15 days at 70-75 degrees. They can be transplanted 30-42 days after sowing.
Pests and Diseases include aphids, slugs, and snails, powdery mildew, downy mildew, rust, and bacterial leaf spot.
- The cultivar ‘Baby Cole’ has 3” bright red ray florets with yellow tips and a burgundy disk.
- ‘Red Plume’ has brick red flowers.
- ‘Tokajer’ has dark orange flowers, and ‘Kobold’ has deep red flowers with yellow tips and a red disk.