The Arch City Gardener

Journeys In St. Louis Gardening and Beyond

Spotlight on Coreopsis


If you’re looking for a yellow boost to the garden, coreopsis is a great plant. I have two types of coreopsis in my yard, but quite honestly, I am a bit confused about this plant and its names. Researching this sunny plant, I thought tickseed was a type but I think that’s just a common name. So where words fail me, pictures will do the talking.

This variety of coreopsis blooms all summer but requires a bit of maintenance trimming off the spent blooms.

This type of coreopsis blooms all summer but requires frequent trimming of the spent blooms.

moonbeam coreopsis (600x800)

This carefree coreopsis blooms all summer and grows the size of a small shrub.

I have been referring to the mounding, shrub-like plant as moonbeam (c. verticallata) and the other as tickseed (c. auriculata). Can anybody out there in gardenland provide clarity?

What I do know for certain is that one is carefee, the other not as much. Starting in June, the moonbeam blooms begin to burst forth atop its fine foliage. This mounding plant and can be as large as a small shrub. In the fall, I take my hedge shears and cut it all the way back. Give it a sunny spot and it will bloom nearly all summer. Bonus: it’s drought tolerant.

On the other hand, I keep handy my pruners and am continuously cleaning up the other type that I have referred to as tickseed coreopsis. This guy has sunny yellow flowers at the end of tall, thin stems. The leaves are more spear shaped. The blooms, although relatively short lived, add a nice brightness to the bed. I planted this variety because I wanted something that I could cut and add to vases all summer long. And it has not disappointed.

Both are easily adapted to the garden and I have divided them without any problems. The moonbeam truly wants full sun, up to six hours a day. One of my divisions has been a bit slow to take off and I think it’s because it does not get enough sun.



Author: mjarz

Welcome to the Arch City Gardener. My name is Mimi and I started this blog to share my journeys in learning to garden in St. Louis County, Missouri and learn more from my readers who garden. Thanks for reading The Arch City Gardener.

2 thoughts on “Spotlight on Coreopsis

  1. C. verticillata, threadleaf coreopsis, is a carefree plant as you say. C. auriculata, mouse ear coreopsis, is a naturally dwarf coreopsis species that wants more particular growing conditions. There are many varieties of threadleaf coreoposis, and there are other species that are carefree. I grow C. palmata, stiff coreopsis, a very easy plant as long as it has sun and you yank up a few handfuls now and then so it doesn’t take over.

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