Scientific name: Gaillardia
One of the most rewarding things about native plant gardening is watching what you planted come back every year (perennials), but much less attention is given to the annuals. This flower is an annual, but luckily, I hear it is a prolific re-seeder. It seems to do really well on very poor, clay soil in dry locations. They are also highly deer resistant, but will attract many curious neighbors, so be armed with information as you may need to answer their questions.
Q: Is it a coneflower?
A: No – it’s in the sunflower family.
Q: Why call it a blanket flower. Does it blanket stuff?
A: Its colors are reminiscent of patterns and colors found in Native American blankets. The scientific name came from a French botanist.
Q: I want one! Where can I get it!?
A: If you are lucky enough to live near a native plant store, ask them. We got ours from a store called “Nature by Design” in Northern Virginia. Their website: http://www.nature-by-design.com/