That flower is called the Maximilian Sunflower, but is also known as Michaelmas Daisy. It is native to the eastern half of North America. Maximilian Sunflower (Helianthus maximiliani) is a clump or colony forming perennial herb. It spreads vegetatively by sprouting from a rhizome. Its thick rhizome is edible similar to the Jerusalem artichoke. It also reproduces by seed but most are eaten by birds.
Maximilian Sunflower produces numerous tall, leafy, unbranched stems in each colony. These stems may be as short as 3 feet or as tall as 10 feet. Leaves are long and narrow.
At the top of each of these stems are numerous yellow flowers produced on short stalks.
The Maximilian Sunflower blooms in early fall with an incredible display of brilliant yellow. It is a great addition to the landscape bringing color at seasons end. Use them in borders,
along a wall,
or against a building to provide color and food for wildlife.
Remember to plant them where you have space because they will spread!
Photos & Narrative By:Stephen Sain
Staff Plant Physiologist