This bag of fluffy seeds below was planted indoors under grow lights and to my delight, they grew with ease.
Once the weather grew warm I planted them in a container in the front garden and waited. In a few months they looked like this and much fun was had guessing what they might be.
By the end of August it became clear as the plants expanded and flowers appeared - these are Gaillardia or Blanket Flower.
Aren't they pretty? and long lasting too. We've had some great fall weather here this year and these lovely flowers are still producing blooms out in the front yard. Gaillardia come in perennial and annual varieties and I'm not sure which I have. In fact, it appears that I actually have two different varieties all together as the petals are very different on these flowers.
|Instead of petals there are individual flowers ringing the disk of this bloom|
As the flowers begin to fade the petals start to fall off leaving just the disk behind
At first the disk retains its' colour but that eventually begins to fade as the seeds are formed.
|You can see the fresh dark coloured disk in |
the background and the drying disk up front
I wasn't around in time to catch this flower before the seeds blew away in the wind. Once they have dried you must be quick to catch them before they drop and scatter. If you find a seedhead that looks dry a quick rub will tell you whether it is ready or not. Seeds that fall away from the plant are ready for you to take inside for storage. If they stick, they need a little time yet to dry.