Photo: Conrado (wikimedia)
A stalwart perennial in American gardens, the lanceleaf coreopsis is a native of the prairies of the Midwest. It is a plant with a sunny disposition.
The daisy flowers have yellow petals that are toothed at the tips and bloom at the end of 18-inch long stems. If deadheaded regularly, many flowers are produced in cycles, throughout the summer. It makes a good cut flower.
Coreopsis “lanceolata” has narrow well-shaped leaves and a height of 12-36 inches. The genus name, “coreopsis,” is from the Latin and means “bed bug” because the seeds are black, and they have a small hook on one end. A common name is tickseed, because the seeds have been likened to ticks. Our pioneers used the seeds to stuff mattresses and thought they repelled insects.
There are also some called threadleaf coreopsis with finer needlelike foliage. These are also easy to grow and deer don’t seem to like them. They tolerate dry locations in full sun and can be sheared back after blooming to encourage continued bloom.
The pale lemon “moonbeam” blends well with other perennials, such as blue veronica. The threadleaf variety “Zagreb” has darker yellow flowers and “rosea” has light pink flowers. If you are looking for a long blooming perennial which is trouble free, then coreopsis is the plant for you.