Photo by Melody

PlantFiles: Black-eyed Susan, Gloriosa Daisy, Yellow Ox-eye Daisy
Rudbeckia hirta 'Prairie Sun'

Family: Asteraceae (ass-ter-AY-see-ee) (Info)
Genus: Rudbeckia (rud-BEK-ee-a) (Info)
Species: hirta (HER-tuh) (Info)
Cultivar: Prairie Sun

7 vendors have this plant for sale.

41 members have or want this plant for trade.


18-24 in. (45-60 cm)
24-36 in. (60-90 cm)

12-15 in. (30-38 cm)

USDA Zone 5a: to -28.8 C (-20 F)
USDA Zone 5b: to -26.1 C (-15 F)
USDA Zone 6a: to -23.3 C (-10 F)
USDA Zone 6b: to -20.5 C (-5 F)
USDA Zone 7a: to -17.7 C (0 F)
USDA Zone 7b: to -14.9 C (5 F)
USDA Zone 8a: to -12.2 C (10 F)
USDA Zone 8b: to -9.4 C (15 F)
USDA Zone 9a: to -6.6 C (20 F)
USDA Zone 9b: to -3.8 C (25 F)
USDA Zone 10a: to -1.1 C (30 F)
USDA Zone 10b: to 1.7 C (35 F)

Sun Exposure:
Sun to Partial Shade


Bloom Color:
Gold (Yellow-Orange)
Pale Yellow
Bright Yellow

Bloom Time:
Mid Summer
Late Summer/Early Fall


Other details:
May be a noxious weed or invasive
This plant is attractive to bees, butterflies and/or birds
Drought-tolerant; suitable for xeriscaping
Average Water Needs; Water regularly; do not overwater
Self-sows freely; deadhead if you do not want volunteer seedlings next season
This plant is resistant to deer

Soil pH requirements:
5.6 to 6.0 (acidic)
6.1 to 6.5 (mildly acidic)
6.6 to 7.5 (neutral)

Patent Information:
Unknown - Tell us

Propagation Methods:
From seed; direct sow outdoors in fall
From seed; direct sow after last frost

Seed Collecting:
Allow seedheads to dry on plants; remove and collect seeds
Properly cleaned, seed can be successfully stored

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There are a total of 30 photos.
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10 positives
2 neutrals
1 negative

Gardeners' Notes:

Neutral ZigsMom On Jul 25, 2013, ZigsMom from Crystal Lake, CT wrote:

Just bought this plant as perennial. First time I'd ever seen it so of course I had to get it. Really hoping it comes back in the spring in my CT garden. Will post success-or not-next spring. In the meantime we'll enjoy the beautiful eye-catching flowers.

Positive NancyMcD On Oct 20, 2011, NancyMcD from Grand Marais, MI wrote:

'Prairie Sun' is a short-lived perennial for us here on the south shore of Lake Superior. What a performer! Once it starts blooming, there's no stopping it until hard frost. It self-sows reliably but not weedily. The color combination goes well with many other flowers, unlike the rather harsh highway-line-yellow so common in this genus. Great cut flower, too. This one is a real winner here; highly recommended.

Positive gardadore On Jul 12, 2010, gardadore from Saylorsburg, PA (Zone 6a) wrote:

I don't depend on the plant to return the next year in my zone but make sure to sprinkle the seeds around. It acts more like a bi-annual, blooming the second year, giving seed but rarely returning. Absolutely gorgeous in a mass!

Negative gardeningfun On Jun 13, 2010, gardeningfun from Harpersfield, OH (Zone 5a) wrote:

Did not come back in zone 5a this year -2010. Planted it last summer. I bought this at a very reputable nursery here North Eastern Ohio, as a large potted plant. Planted it in full sun, clay soil. It declined in late summer and never came back this year. All the other plants in that garden returned, but this one. We had very heavy snowstorms and low temps this last winter. The Indian Summer Rudbeckia didn't come back either.

Positive sandykay7 On Oct 12, 2009, sandykay7 from Spicer, MN wrote:

I have had this flower come back for 2 years now. I love how long the flowers lasts...summer through fall!

Positive kqcrna On Oct 15, 2007, kqcrna from Cincinnati, OH (Zone 6a) wrote:

This plant wintersowed very well for me.

It is actually a different type rudbeckia than "Irish Eyes". I wintersowed both, and both are very pretty. Both have a green eye. Irish Eyes grew larger blossoms, but had fewer petals per blossom. There is also a much less defined color change as petals run from eye to the outer edge of the flower.

Neutral berrygirl On Mar 22, 2007, berrygirl from Braselton, GA (Zone 7b) wrote:

A Gold Medal winner. Orange petals wash to yellow at the tips around green centers. Tall and robust and great for cutting.

Positive Anitabryk2 On Jul 19, 2006, Anitabryk2 from Long Island, NY (Zone 6b) wrote:

This plant wintersowed nicely

Positive flamingonut On Jul 8, 2006, flamingonut from New Milford, NJ wrote:

This is one of my favorite Rudbeckias; it's well behaved, and although I've seen conflicting information in regards to it's hardiness, I've had mine for 3 years now, and hasn't reseeded. I do keep it deadheaded.

Positive bigcityal On Dec 6, 2005, bigcityal from Menasha, WI (Zone 5a) wrote:

I bought this plant as Irish Eyes. I have seen it sold as Prairie Sun also. Reseeds well.

Positive Burnsr10 On Oct 13, 2005, Burnsr10 from Glens Falls, NY wrote:

Planted seed this year which yielded a beautiful plant with many flowers

Positive tabasco On Sep 5, 2005, tabasco from Cincinnati (Anderson Twp), OH (Zone 6a) wrote:

A departure from the traditional 'black-eyed susan' because it sports a green/yellow eye and so provides summer perennial 'gaity' with less contrast than the traditional version.

I would classify it as a tender perennial. Sometimes it returns, other times it does not. The tag says that in our area it should be grown as an annual.

Prairie Sun garners lots of compliments in our sunny border, and I like it, too, for it's easy maintenance.

Positive Terry On Jan 20, 2003, Terry from Murfreesboro, TN (Zone 7a) wrote:

A half-hardy annual, this variety has an unusual green center and bright orange-to-yellow petals.

July 2008 update

I snagged a gallon of 'Prairie Sun' at a local grocery store today. What a wonderfully sunny, cheery plant. The tag on this pot says hardy to zone 3, which would certainly make it more than a half-hardy annual. Guess we'll see what happens this winter!


This plant has been said to grow in the following regions:

Calistoga, California
Pacifica, California
Richmond, California
Lewes, Delaware
Hebron, Kentucky
Salvisa, Kentucky
Grand Marais, Michigan
Mason, Michigan
Spicer, Minnesota
Waynesboro, Mississippi
Lincoln, Nebraska
New Milford, New Jersey
Glens Falls, New York
Ronkonkoma, New York
Beaufort, North Carolina
Greensboro, North Carolina
Zebulon, North Carolina
Cincinnati, Ohio
Geneva, Ohio
Salem, Oregon
Drexel Hill, Pennsylvania
Reading, Pennsylvania
Saylorsburg, Pennsylvania
Blythewood, South Carolina
North Augusta, South Carolina
Hockley, Texas
Provo, Utah
Newport News, Virginia
Smithfield, Virginia
Alderwood Manor, Washington
East Port Orchard, Washington
Kalama, Washington
Dallas, Wisconsin
Menasha, Wisconsin

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