Alphabetical Plant Listing

Helenium (Sneezeweed)

Common Sneezeweed, False Sunflower, Helen's Flower, Yellow Star (Helenium)


Native to North America and Central America, Helenium is a great perennial for the late season garden as it provides weeks of splashes of color, from early summer to early fall, when many other perennials are starting to fade. It is commonly known as 'Sneezeweed' due to the ancient use of its dried leaves in making snuff, inhaled to help sneezing and rid the body of evil spirits.

  • Featuring daisy-like flowers in a wide array of hot colors, from light yellow to dark red, Helenium can grow up to 3-5 ft. tall (90-150 cm) with a spread of 1-2 ft (30-60 cm). The showy petals surround a spherical brown cone covered with golden pollen that attracts butterflies.
  • Helenium look tremendous paired with almost anything, but especially with grasses, and look stunning planted in mass. Well suited for cottage gardens, prairie plantings or naturalistic areas.
  • Helenium make very attractive cut flowers
  • Helenium are great for wildlife. Bees and butterflies love them as they flower in summer, and birds pick over the seed heads in winter. 
  • Helenium are deer resistant
  • Full sun lovers, Helenium are very hardy and enjoy average, medium to wet soils. They prefer rich, moist soils and struggle in dry soils. Regular watering matters for profuse blossoms!
  • Deadheading will extend the flowering season. Once flowering has ceased and the plant has died back the stems should be cut down.
  • The best time to plant them is in spring

Guide Information

Hardiness 3 - 8
Heat Zones 1 - 8
Climate Zones 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24
Plant Type Perennials
Plant Family Helenium - Sneezeweeds
Exposure Full Sun
Season of Interest Summer (Early,Mid,Late)
Fall
Height 3' - 5' (90cm - 150cm)
Spread 1' - 2' (30cm - 60cm)
Water Needs Average
Maintenance Low
Soil Type Chalk, Clay, Loam, Sand
Soil pH Acid, Alkaline, Neutral
Soil Drainage Moist but Well-Drained
Characteristics Cut Flowers, Showy
Tolerance Clay Soil, Deer, Wet Soil
Attracts Birds, Butterflies
Landscaping Ideas Beds and Borders
Garden Styles Informal and Cottage, Prairie and Meadow

Photo: / 123RF Stock Photo, Botanik Foto

While every effort has been made to describe these plants accurately, please keep in mind that height, bloom time, and color may differ in various climates. The description of these plants has been written based on numerous outside resources.

Guide Information

Hardiness 3 - 8
Heat Zones 1 - 8
Climate Zones 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24
Plant Type Perennials
Plant Family Helenium - Sneezeweeds
Exposure Full Sun
Season of Interest Summer (Early,Mid,Late)
Fall
Height 3' - 5' (90cm - 150cm)
Spread 1' - 2' (30cm - 60cm)
Water Needs Average
Maintenance Low
Soil Type Chalk, Clay, Loam, Sand
Soil pH Acid, Alkaline, Neutral
Soil Drainage Moist but Well-Drained
Characteristics Cut Flowers, Showy
Tolerance Clay Soil, Deer, Wet Soil
Attracts Birds, Butterflies
Landscaping Ideas Beds and Borders
Garden Styles Informal and Cottage, Prairie and Meadow
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