In contrast to Black-eyed Susan and Brown-eyed Susan which are biennial or short-lived, Sweet Black-eyed Susan will persist for many years. Numerous yellow flowers, which average 3″ across, will bloom for many weeks starting late summer and into fall. When blooming, it has a pleasant sweet smell, similar to that of Sweet Grass, thus the common name.
Sweet Black-eyed Susan is a nonrhizomatous perennial which typically occurs on moist prairies, along streambanks and in low areas. It grows 3-5′ tall and features daisy-like flowers (to 3″ across) with yellow rays and dark brownish-purple center disks on branched stems. Toothed, gray-green leaves (lower leaves are 3-lobed) are downy below. Best grown in medium moisture soils that are well-drained loams in full sun. Tolerates hot and humid summers and some drought. Appreciates good air circulation. Deadhead spent flowers to encourage additional bloom. A very tough prairie plant, it is able to withstand high winds and tough soils.