Tall Cone-Flower (Rudbeckia Laciniata) is a tall, lanky member of this genus, with an entirely different temperament from that of the Blackeyed Su-son. No hot, sandy or dusty fields for this, but the cool depths of moist thickets. As usual with vegetation in moist, rich soil, its growth is luxuriant. The smooth, branching stem ascends to heights of 3 to 10 feet and is leafy throughout. Ordinarily, the plant does not grow more than five feet in height; those that exceed this height might be termed giants of the species. The lower leaves are very large, are on long petioles and are cleft into five or seven divisions; the lower and middle stem leaves are usually three-parted while the upper ones, or at least, the ones nearest the flowers are small and elliptical.
Several large flower heads terminate the branches; they measure from 2 to 4 inches across. The central disc is, at first, hemispherical and green but finally becomes elongated and brownish. The rays number six to 12 and are bright yellow in color. This species blooms from July until Sept. and is found from Me. to Manitoba and southwards.
Rudbeckia triloba is a hairy biennial with slender, spreading branches, at the ends of which are numerous, comparatively small, but showy, flower heads. The central disc is hemispherical, composed of brownish-purple florets. The rays are golden-yellow, brightest near the disc. The leaves are bright green, thin, rough, the upper ones being lance-shaped and the lower one three-lobed; all are rather coarsely toothed. Common in rich soil from N. J. to Minn, and southwards.
Ten-petalled Sunflower. Helianthus decapetalus.
This is a slender stemmed, graceful, showy-flowered Sunflower, common in damp woods and on the borders of thickets, from Me., Quebec and Minn, southwards. The branching stem grows from 2 to 5 feet tall; it is slightly hairy-rough on the upper portions but smooth below. The leaves are thin, rather rough-broad lance-shaped, short-stemmed and grow oppositely on the stem; they are all sharply saw-toothed. The showy flowers, growing on slender peduncles from the ends of the branches, are 2 to 3 inches across. Though often with ten rays, they just as frequently have any number from 8 to 15.
Common Sunflower (Helianthus Annuus) is the common garden sunflower that often has such enormous heads. The normal, wild plant is common from Minn, to Texas and westward. The flower heads range from three to six inches in diameter; it is only the cutlivated variety, produced from this, that has the mammoth heads we often see. It has been introduced into most civilized countries and furnishes many staple articles of commerce. It probably reaches its greatest development in point of size in Russia, the seeds from plants grown in that, country being more than double in size of any produced in the United States.
In its wild state the plant only grows from three to six feet tall. Its name is due, not only to its sunlike face, but also to the fact that the flowers usually face the sun, turning their heads slowly so as to follow it around the horizon. Their period of bloom is from July until Sept.. This species may readily be recognized by the large, alternately, three-ribbed, rough, toothed leaves.
Jerusalem Artichoke. Helianthus tuberosus.