Solidago are Great Full Sun Flowers for the Summer Garden

Solidago are Great Full Sun Flowers for the Summer Garden

By Published April 27, 2015 Updated June 27, 2022

It's time to debunk a garden myth: Solidago (Goldenrod) does not aggravate or cause allergies! The pollen is too heavy to fly in the wind and it sticks to the legs of butterflies and insects that feed on its nectar instead. It is one of the most glorious late summer flowers often seen growing along side highways in fields. This native wildflower has spectacular displays of bright yellow flowers clustered on long stalks.

Solidago rugosa Fireworks is a US native solidago that reaches 40" tall and thrives in sun to part-sun conditions. Considered by many to be one of the top goldenrods of all time, the arching yellow flowers are superb hummingbird attractors. Hardy in zones 5a to 9b.

Solidago stricta (Wand Goldenrod) are full sun flowers that grow to 6'. This plant is native from Maryland to Texas and you can find it along riverbanks as well as in wet meadows. It emerges from its winter rosette with its leaves disguised by laying flat against the stem. These stems expand all spring and summer until October, when the top 10 inches give way to bright yellow flowers, giving the hummingbirds a treat.

Solidago drumondii (Cliff Goldenrod) is a Midwest native, found on cliffs, buffs and ledges throughout the Ozarks. These full sun flowers form a clump reaching to 18" with arching stems, each covered in September with a cluster of tiny, bright yellow, daisy-like flowers. Solidagos are easily grown in average, dry to medium, well-drained soils in full sun. This species does not spread as aggressively as do some of the other goldenrods.

Solidago shortii 'Solar Cascade' (Solar Cascade Short's Goldenrod) is found on alkaline clay slopes in the wild, but can be planted en masse in a garden for a dramatic effect and to use as a cut flower in arrangements. The golden-yellow flowers bloom from August through October making themselves attractive to bees and butterflies. Solidago shortii is extremely drought tolerant once established, but performs best in moist to average garden soil under full sun.

Solidago sphacelata 'Golden Fleece' (Golden Fleece Autumn Goldenrod) is a compact, spreading goldenrod. An East Coast native, it can be found from Illinois to Mississippi. It features tiny, bright yellow flowers starting in early September. These full sun flowers typically grow to 20 inches tall. Their rosettes of toothed, heart-shaped foliage form an attractive low-growing mat-like, dark green ground cover when planted 15” apart.

Goldenrod plants provide good color and contrast for the late summer to early fall perennial border, rock garden, wild garden or naturalized area. Get yours today from Plant Delights Nursery!

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