Sneezeweed, Helenium autumnale, is also known as Helen’s flower. Sneezeweed has attractive daisylike flowers that are often used in borders, containers, and in wetlands. Find facts and information on growing and caring for sneezeweed plants and companion plants.
Sneezeweed Facts and Info
Helenium autmanale grows in Zones 3-8 and will reach heights of 5 ft. And 18” wide. It is a perennial that grows in an upright form. You will find it will also grow fairly quickly when given optimum growing conditions.
Common sneezeweed prefers full sun and fertile, well-drained soil with a pH of 5.5-7.0. Plants will tolerate wet soils and may be planted in boggy areas. Daisylike yellow or orange flowers appear from late summer into mid autumn. Plant in groups in the border, in a mixed container planting, or in a wetlands area. Companions for well-drained soil include ‘Autumn joy’ sedum, Russian sage, and bluebeard. Wetland companions include ‘Variegatus’ sweet flag and goatsbeard.
Care of Helenium autumnale
Plants should be spaced 18” apart in spring or fall. Apply slow-release granular plant food 3 weeks after planting in spring. Try to water deeply when the soil becomes dry. If planting in a wetland, avoid plant foods or chemical pesticides. Deadhead blooms to stimulate re-blooming. Leave plants standing in fall until they winter from frost, then cut them back.
Propagation is done by dividing in spring or fall every 3 years to maintain the plants vigor. This is done by dividing sneezeweed by digging the entire clump. Slice through the clump with a sharp spade and replant pieces that contain healthy roots and shoots. Seed germination occurs in 8-12 days at 72 degrees. Transplanting can be done 28-35 days after sowing.
Pests and Diseases include powdery mildew and occasionally rust may occur.
Other Species Related to Sneezeweed
‘Grandicephalum’ has large yellow flowers.
‘Peregrinum’ has mahogany flowers with a yellow border.
‘Rubrum’ flowers are dark red
‘Superbum’ flowers are wavy yellow.