Gaillardia for Florida

S & J Nursery’s Gaillardia

Blanket Flower / Indian Blanket Flower

Gaillardia is a long time favorite of mine for the North Florida garden. They area Florida native plant selection and make a great xeroscape plant for low water low maintenance landscapes. Plant them in full sun in any
well draining soils and leave them be.

Here’s what The Southern Living Garden Book had to say
about Gaillardia…” They Thrive on Neglect, so put away the watering can and fertilizer. They love heat have no serious pests, and are not fussy about soil ( although they must have good drainage ) “

If that explanation from The Southern Living Garden book weren’t good enough to get you to give these pretty plants a try, just take a look at those blooms. With so many new hybrids showing up every day there’s a Gaillardia for every garden. Never will you get so much in return for so little effort than with Gaillardia in your garden.

With over 20 species of Gaillardia its easy to get confused on what’s an annual that will need to be replanted next year, what’s a perennial that will stay in the garden and flower again next year and how they will behave in
the North Florida landscape. Fortunately only three species are commonly grown in the United States. So here’s a breakdown of one on my all time favorite flowers for Florida, I hope it helps!…

Gaillardia Aristata

 – Gaillardia Aristata is a perennial Blanket flower that is not commonly found in garden centers, probably because they tend not to bloom in their first year from seed increasing the difficulty and time needed before a plant is ready to sell.

 – Gaillardia Aristata is native to much of North America and tend to be naturalized in the western portion of the United States, and absent from the eastern portions.

 – Plant size to 3 ft tall, slow growing, needs full sun and well drained soils.

 – The flower colors range from yellow to red and can grow up to 4 inches in diameter. The most common coloring being the red center with a yellow border at the edge of the petals.

 – Flowers from May to September

 – This wild gaillardia Aristata is still commonly used in wildflower mixes or prairie restorations.

 Click here for more
detailed information on
Gaillardia Aristata 


Gaillardia Pulchella

 – Gaillardia Pulchella is an annual selection that will need to be replanted from seed the following year, if the plant does not happen to re-sew itself for you, which they will do more readily in unmulched environments.

 – Gaillardia Pulchella is native to most of the United States and is a Florida Native plant species.

 – Gaillardia Pulchella can be found growing in any well draining soils and full sun location, and is ideal for coastal areas including sand dunes, good dune reclamation plant

 – Gaillardia Pulchella may reach 1-2 feet high and spread 2-3 feet wide.

 – Commonly used as a roadside planting in Florida.

Blooms are a either yellow and red, red or yellow and 1-3 inches wide.

Click here for more information on Gaillardia Pulchella from UFIFAS

Click here for more detailed information on Gaillardia Pulchella from the Florida Native Plant Society


 Gaillardia Grandiflora

Gaillardia Grandiflora is the most commonly found variety of Blanket Flower found in garden centers today and is a result of the cross between gaillardia Aristata and gaillardia Pulchella which are
considered to be the parent species to gaillardia Grandiflora

 – They are Perennial plants in all but the hottest most humid parts of the United States where they can be considered and annual or a short lived perennial plant.

 – There are alto of selections of gaillardia grandiflora available and bloom colors
and types can vary greatly and range from yellows to oranges and  reds and may be flat open faced single
layer of petals to multiple petals or even fan shaped petals and mixes and variations of any of those.

 – Exceptionally long blooming season, lasting from spring until the first frost.