The genus Helenium is comprised of annuals, biennials, and perennials with great garden value because of their brightly colored flowers, their sturdy constitutions, and their late-season bloom times. These 40 or so species hail from damp meadows or woodland edges in North and Central America. The flowers resemble daisies, and have prominent, central disk florets in the shape of a small ball. Petals may be yellow, orange, red, or bronze. Flowers attract bees and are good for cutting. Grow sneezeweed in a border, meadow, or cutting garden.
Noteworthy CharacteristicsBold colors on sturdy plants with a late summer to fall bloom time. Good cut flowers. Toxic if eaten. Foliage may irritate skin.
CareSite in full sun. Tolerant of most any fertile, moist but well-drained soil. Support as needed, and deadhead regularly.
PropagationDivide plants in spring or fall. Sow seed of species in a cold frame in spring. Cultivars can be started from basal cuttings in spring.
ProblemsPowdery mildew, fungal spots, rust, leaf smut.