Tuesday, June 14, 2011
Gailarida-also called Blanket Flower-is one of my top perennials for Louisiana. This plant can endure our hot summers and it blooms continually all summer. What more could you ask for? In my opinion, Gailarida's best quality is its drought tolerance. The last thing I want to do is haul the hose out amid 90 degree temps and water plants. Gailarida only gets water when it rains and its fine with that.
Gailardia doesn't grow very tall (about 1 foot) but is does grow wide (about 2 feet across). Its growth habit is "floppy" meaning it likes to lay across neighboring plants. I don't mind, it gives the garden a casual cottage feel.
All you need to grow Gailardia is full sun and a moderate amount of space. I'd say a 2 foot circle for each plant should be adequate. Gailarida is available in a few different colors-- my favorite is 'Red and Yellow' and there is a yellow variety called 'Oranges and Lemons'.
I will end with a picture of my outside cat Ginger. She loves laying beside the catnip (on the left side of the picture). Sometimes I pinch off a few catnip leaves for my inside cats and they love it!