Easy-to-grow members of the sunflower family yielding a profusion of yellow, orange, maroon, or reddish flowers. Deadhead for longer bloom; use hedge shears to remove large numbers of spent blooms. Both annual and perennial kinds are easy to propagate—annuals from seed sown in place or in pots, perennials from seed or division. Plants tend to self-sow; seeds attract birds.
The species listed here are from the eastern and southern U.S. unless otherwise noted.
Grows to 1–2 ft. high, spreading to 3 ft. Narrow dark green leaves with three to five lobes. Bright yellow, 2 1/2–3-in. single flowers bloom all summer, carried high above the foliage on long, slender stems.Coreopsis lanceolata
Grows to 1–2 ft. high, 1–1 1/2 ft. wide. Narrow, somewhat hairy foliage, mostly in tufts near plant’s base; some leaves on lower part of flower stems have a few lobes. Yellow, 1 1/2–2-in. blossoms on pale green stems bloom in late spring and summer; make excellent cut flowers. When well established, persists year after year. Has naturalized in Hawaii.Coreopsis maritima
Perennial. Native to coast of Southern California. Sometimes called sea dahlia. Grows from a tuberous taproot to reach 1–3 ft. high, 1–2 ft. wide. Stems are hollow; leaves are somewhat succulent, divided into very narrow lobes. True yellow, 2 1/2–4-in. blossoms on 9–12-in. stems in spring; make striking cut flowers. Use in borders, for naturalizing.
Northeastern native. Fine-textured plant 1 1/2–2 ft. tall, 1 ft. wide, with pink, yellow-centered daisylike flowers from summer to fall. Unlike other species, prefers moist soil.
‘Heaven’s Gate’ has pink flowers with a dark crimson ring around the center.
‘Sweet Dreams’ has threadlike leaves and masses of big white flowers with a raspberry ring surrounding a yellow eye.
Native to much of North America, this dramatic coreopsis is slender, upright, 1 1/2–3 ft. tall, 1–1 1/2 ft. wide, with wiry stems; much like cosmos in growth habit. Smooth leaves and stems. Summer-to-fall flowers in yellow, orange, maroon, bronze, and reddish, banded with contrasting colors; purple-brown centers. Dwarf and double varieties are available. Sow seeds in place in dryish soil.
Grows to 2 1/2–3 ft. tall, half as broad. Many erect or slightly leaning stems carry many whorls of finely divided, very narrow leaves. Bright yellow, 2-in. daisies are freely borne at stem tips over a long bloom season—from summer through autumn. One of the most tolerant of drought, neglect. ‘Moonbeam’, 1 1/2–2 ft. tall, has pale yellow flowers; ‘Zagreb’, 1 ft. tall, has golden yellow flowers.
‘Autumn Blush’ bears butter-yellow flowers with red centers. As the weather cools, the flowers blush reddish pink.
Tender perennial grown as an annual. Grows to about 1 1/2 ft. tall and 2 1/2 ft. wide; forms a clump of fine-textured foliage similar to that of C. verticillata. Ruby red flowers to 1 in. across appear in late spring through summer. Needs a bit more water than most other types of Coreopsis.‘Nana’
Makes a 5–6-in.-high mat of 2–5-in.-long leaves. Under ideal conditions, it will spread by underground runners to form a 2-ft.-wide clump in a year. Bright orange-yellow, 1–2 1/2-in. flowers rise well above the foliage; blooms profusely over a long season (from spring to fall) if you deadhead faithfully. Best used in front of taller plants, in borders, or as edging.
Has creamy white flowers with bright red centers.‘Sterntaler’
‘Sterntaler’ has yellow flowers with a reddish brown circle in the center.‘Tequila Sunrise’
Grows to 1 1/2 ft. high, 1 ft. wide. Narrow, olive green leaves are irregularly variegated with cream and yellow, with touches of pinkish red in spring and deeper red in fall. Golden yellow, 1 1/2-in. flowers with deep orange-red centers appear continually in summer.
This is the most familiar crocus, whose flowers emerge in shades of white, yellow, lavender, and purpl...
Hybrid between O. majorana and O. vulgare. Grows to 1–2 ft. tall and wide, wit...
Native toeastern Asia. Grows to 3–8 ft.tall, 10 ft. wide. Leaves 6–12 in.long; flower plumes to 1 ft. ...