When To Cut Back Rudbeckia

When To Cut Back Rudbeckia In The UK?

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All herbaceous perennials die back over winter and rudbeckia is no exception, but when is the right time to cut it back for UK gardeners?

When To Cut Back Rudbeckia
When To Cut Back Rudbeckia

When To Cut Back Rudbeckia?

You want to cut back rudbeckia in late autumn once the cold weather has really arrived and the plant has begun dying back naturally.

You want to leave removing the dying growth on your Rudbeckia as long as possible in my book. Don’t remove it at the first sight of it looking untidy, let it go on until it has truly died and then remove it.

I like to take this method to ensure the plant has as much time as possible to store up energy in its roots ready for next year, as soon as you cut back your plant that’s it, it is done for the year.

The more energy you can get into those roots this autumn the better the plant will do next spring and then summer.

So why cut back at all? You can leave the dead foliage there all winter and some natural gardeners encourage this as a way to give habitat to insects and small animals.

There is one problem though, rot. With a lot of soggy decaying foliage right above the root of your rudbeckia, there is a much greater chance they will die over winter.

That is why I like to remove all of the dying foliage once it has started to turn brown in late autumn or early winter.

More On Rudbeckia

Rudbeckia is a member of the Asteraceae family, which is a huge family of plants by the way, along with asters, calendula and daisies.

Rudbeckia is a very popular species of plant, they look gorgeous and are easy to grow, two factors that will always lead to popularity.

Most Rudbeckia are hardy perennials when grown in the UK but there are a couple of types that are only grown as annuals due to our colder winters.

In general, it is the yellow Rudbeckia that are perennial with most other colourways being annual plants.

What Conditions Do Rudbeckia Like?

Rudbeckia like a sunny spot and well-draining soil. They don’t like their roots drying out though so need to be watered during dry spells. They really don’t like their roots being in standing water either though which is why well-draining soil is a must.

Although they like a sunny spot they can also survive in partial shade but with reduced flowering.

What Rudbeckia Should I Grow?

Looking to find the perfect Rudbeckia for your garden? Here are some of my favourite varieties.

Goldsturm

Winner of the RHS Award of Garden Merit this is what you would call a classic Rudbeckia. Long yellow petals lead to a dark black centre on daisy-like flowers.

A fan favourite for bees, butterflies and other pollinators, Goldsturm will be a hub of activity in no time at all.

Rudbeckia Goldsturm
Rudbeckia Goldsturm

Sunbeckia

The Rudbeckia Sunbeckia Series was bred for exceptionally large, long-lasting flowers in unique colours. From early summer all the way into autumn, Rudbeckia ‘Sunbeckia Mia’ produces a stunning display of abundant, bi-coloured flowers that are yellow on the outside and deep red on the inside. 

Find it at Suttons

All Sorts Mixed

Mixed packs of Rudbeckia seeds or plants are available from most online seed retailers. These mixed rudbeckias look amazing when grown in pots or packed into a border.

Find it at Sutton’s.

Related Posts

Want to learn more about Rudbeckia? Here are some more posts with lots of information on these cheery plants.

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3 Comments

  1. My Rudbeckias are 8 feet high, have I given them too much feed? I only expected them to be about 18″ Help! Thank you. Carol from Essex

    1. Hi Carol, Do you know what variety of rudbeckia you grew? There are some that do grow that high so looks like there might have been a mix-up in the variety grown. I wouldn’t expect one that only usually reaches 18″ to get that tall no matter how much it was fed!

  2. My rudbeckia grew to over 6 ft last summer but I was told I could cut it back about now ( late May) to restrict its height but not its flowering potential. True?

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