Rudbeckia fulgida var. sullivantii ‘Goldsturm’-Orange Coneflower, Sullivant’s Coneflower, Black-Eyed Susan

Rudbeckia fulgida var. sullivantii ‘Goldsturm’ in the north bed on 10-3-13, #272-24.

Black-Eyed Susan, Orange Coneflower, Sullivant’s Coneflower

‘Goldsturm’ Black-Eyed-Susan

Rudbeckia fulgida var. sullivantii ‘Goldsturm’

rud-BEK-ee-ah FULL-jih-dah sul-lih-VANT-ee-eye

1999 Perennial Plant of the Year

Rudbeckia fulgida var. sullivantii (C.L.Boynton & Beadle) Cronquist is the correct and accepted scientific infraspecific name for this plant. It was described as such by Arthur John Cronquist in Rhodora in 1945. It was previously described as Rudbeckia sullivantii by C.L. Boynton and Chauncey Delos Beadle in Biltmore Botanical Studies in 1901.

Rudbeckia fulgida Aiton was named and described by William Aiton in Hortus Kewensis in 1789.

The cultivar ‘Goldsturm’ was introduced by Karl Foerster of Potsdam, Germany in 1937. It is more compact and bushier than the species with larger and brighter flowers. The industry often offers this plant as Rudbeckia ‘Goldstrum’.

Plants of the World Online is still uploading data, so there isn’t much on their site about the Rudbeckia genus. They do list six accepted infraspecific names of Rudbeckia fulgida.


Rudbeckia fulgida var. sullivantii ‘Goldsturm’ on 5-1-12, #88-11.

My Rudbeckia fulgida var. sullivantii ‘Goldsturm’ was given to me by good friend and fellow plant collector, Walley Morse, of Greenville, Mississippi. I’m not sure if he gave it to me in the fall of 2011 or the spring of 2012. I planted it in the corner bed by the front porch and west sunroom where it did very well.


Rudbeckia fulgida var. sullivantii ‘Goldsturm’ on 6-2-12, #95-39.

Sullivant’s Coneflower is the common name for the former Rudbeckia sullivantii which is a synonym of Rudbeckia fulgida var. sullivantii. Many Rudbeckia species, including Rudbeckia fulgida, are quite variable from one location to another. This has led to several taxonomic disputes. The other dispute is the common name.  Rudbeckia fulgida and Rudbeckia hirta are both called the Brown-Eyed Susan and Black-Eyed Susan depending on what site you are on. Rudbeckia fulgida is also known as the Orange Coneflower. In other words, Sullivant’s Coneflower is a variety of the Orange Coneflower.


Rudbeckia fulgida var. sullivantii ‘Goldsturm’ at 27″ tall on 7-1-12, #104-14.


Family: Asteraceae (Compositae)
Origin: North America
Zones: USDA Zones 3a-9b (-40 to 25° F)
Size: 24-36” tall and wide
Light: Sun to part shade
Soil: Average, well-drained soil
Water: Average water needs. Prefers consistent moisture but are somewhat drought tolerant.
Notes: Deadhead flowers for repeat bloom and to keep the plant tidy.


Rudbeckia fulgida var. sullivantii ‘Goldsturm’ on 7-1-12, #104-15.

They aren’t really that particular about the soil type as long as it is well-drained and moderately fertile. They prefer consistent moisture, but they are also somewhat drought tolerant. If they start to droop, it is a good sign they need a little water.


Rudbeckia fulgida var. sullivantii ‘Goldsturm’ flower on 7-1-12, #104-16.

Rudbeckia fulgida var. sullivantii ‘Goldsturm’ is a long-lived perennial that spreads by underground rhizomes. They produce masses of bright yellow flowers with brown cones throughout the summer without fail. The flowers are enjoyed by butterflies, bees, and hummingbirds.


Rudbeckia fulgida var. sullivantii ‘Goldsturm’ on 7-19-12, #111-14.

My first summer with the Rudbeckia fulgida var. sullivantii ‘Goldsturm’ went very well. It was a constant bloomer for sure. The only maintenance is removing spent flowers to keep it looking tidy and to encourage more flowers.

<<<<2013 IN MISSOURI>>>>

Rudbeckia fulgida var. sullivantii ‘Goldsturm’ on 5-21-13, #149-8.

After I sold the mansion in Mississippi, dad wanted me to move back to the family farm in mid-Missouri. So, in February 2013, I made the move. I gave up around 200 potted plants but brough many plants with me including the Rudbeckia fulgida var. sullivantii ‘Goldsturm’.

I made a new bed along the south side of my parents home which is where I originally put this plant. There were some issues, though.


Rudbeckia fulgida var. sullivantii ‘Goldsturm’ on 6-1-13, #151-60.

Rudbeckia fulgida is one of nine species of Rudbeckia that are native to Missouri. However, the Missouri Department of Conservation website only has information on three species and Rudbeckia fulgida isn’t one of them.


Rudbeckia fulgida var. sullivantii ‘Goldsturm’ on 7-3-13, #160-25.

I put most of the perennials I brought from Mississippi in the new south bed. I also bought several more plants from an Ebay seller and put most of them in this same bed. There were already a group of Cannas and two Crap Myrtles (I mean, Crape Myrtles).


Rudbeckia fulgida var. sullivantii ‘Goldsturm’ on 7-30-13, #165-52.

I first moved to this farm after my grandpa (my mother’s father) passed away in April 1981. Grandpas house was on the other side of the driveway in what is now called the “other yard” or “over there”, which is where I lived. There were a few Crape Myrtle bushes along the south side of the house which I didn’t like. One year they didn’t come back up so I planted a row or Red Barberry. Well, after that, a few Crape Myrtle sprouts would come up now and then. After I moved, dad got rid of the Red Barberry because he didn’t like the thorns. Of course, the Crape Myrtle continued to pop up even though the bushes were supposed to be dead. Dad took two of those sprouts and put on the south side of their new home. GEEZ! It is like the dead came back to haunt me even after so many years away.

Anyway, those two Crap Myrtle bushes were big problems when I was trying to have a nice flower bed on the south side of the house. My first idea was to get the tractor and yank them out but I wasn’t sure that would be allowed. Even though dad told me I could do what I wanted here, I wasn’t sure if my hidden agenda to get rid of the Crap Myrtle would be approved of… As far as shrubs go, I guess they would be OK if their flowers were white or blue. Instead, they are pink and I am not a pink person. The other is their location. I don’t want bushes that want to take over space smack in the middle of my flower beds…


<<<<2014 IN A NEW LOCATION>>>>

Rudbeckia fulgida var. sullivantii ‘Goldsturm’ on 6-1-14, #228-66. 

I decided things had to change with the south bed but didn’t know exactly what to do with it. OH, I knew what I wanted to do with it and it wasn’t for the fact that “this isn’t my house” thought that keeps popping into my head, it would already be done. BUT, I went for another option. I moved the Rudbeckia fulgida var. sullivantii ‘Goldsturm’ to the bed on the north side of the house. This meant instead of full sun, it would now be in part-shade. The soil here also stays damp longer than the south side and it is flat. The south side had kind of a slope… That’s OK because this plant prefers consistently moist soil…


Rudbeckia fulgida var. sullivantii ‘Goldsturm’ on 6-29-14, #230-76.

I must say, this plant did amazingly well here and pretty much grew like a weed. 2014 was the year I bought the Pineapple Sage (Salvia elegans) from Wagler’s Greenhouse which was AWESOME. I had also bought several Coleus, three of which were unnamed varieties from Harrison’s Greenhouse. They grew SO HUGE!


Rudbeckia fulgida var. sullivantii ‘Goldsturm’ on 7-12-14, #231-76.

As you can see in the above photo, the Coleus on the left was taller than the Rudbeckia fulgida var. sullivantii ‘Goldsturm’ and it usually gets about 30″ tall.


Rudbeckia fulgida var. sullivantii ‘Goldsturm’ on 3-33-15, #232-15.

Even though it was only March, the Rudbeckia fulgida var. sullivantii ‘Goldsturm’ was one of the first perennials to come up. It is always such a relief when perennials start to emerge from their winter sleep. It is a sign that spring is right around the corner. March is still pretty early and there could be plenty of cold weather and snow before the coast is clear.


Rudbeckia fulgida var. sullivantii ‘Goldsturm’ on 5-1-15, #247-14.

It was good to see that this plant had spread. Even though they are dormant, it seems they still spread over the winter under the soil. There certainly weren’t this many before!


Rudbeckia fulgida var. sullivantii ‘Goldsturm’ on 5-14-15, #268-38.

As the temps start warming up even more, this plant gets growing.


Rudbeckia fulgida var. sullivantii ‘Goldsturm’ on 6-27-15, #270-43.

It’s leaves get pretty large before it starts to flower.


Rudbeckia fulgida var. sullivantii ‘Goldsturm’ on 10-3-15, #272-24.



Rudbeckia fulgida var. sullivantii ‘Goldsturm’ on 4-23-17, #321-2-20.

Even though I didn’t seem to have taken any photos of any of the Rudbeckia fulgida var. sullivantii ‘Goldsturm’ plants in 2016, I did move them around somewhat. I planted a few along the southeast corner of the foundation in “the other yard” and a few in the northeast corner bed next to the foundation. (The foundation of my grandparent’s old house where I lived in the early 1980’s.) The above photo is one of them in the northeast corner bed.


Rudbeckia fulgida var. sullivantii ‘Goldsturm’ on 6-11-17, #343-38.

The above photo is in the bed on the north side of my parents home, which was the second location for this plant. GEEZ! I feel like I need a map…


Rudbeckia fulgida var. sullivantii ‘Goldsturm’ on 6-24-17, #349-67.

Again, the above photo of the plant in the north bed…


Rudbeckia fulgida var. sullivantii ‘Goldsturm’ on 7-9-17, #355-37.

And, again, from the northwest corner bed along the old foundation… This bed is a combination of Iris, Horseradish, Rudbeckia hirta, Rhubarb, and Marigold ‘Brocade’. One thing about it, all that shade eliminates weeding.


Rudbeckia fulgida var. sullivantii ‘Goldsturm’ on 7-19-17, #357-63.

Finally, the plants in the southeast corner of the foundation. Well, I suppose that isn’t actually right either. This spot is kind of in the middle, like an inside corner kind of… This spot is difficult because grandpa had planted Bermuda grass in this area… Trying to control Bermuda grass is close to impossible so keeping it out of your beds is very hard. I remember the Bermuda grass growing out of the top of the downspouts here in the early 1980’s…


Rudbeckia fulgida var. sullivantii ‘Goldsturm’ at 26″ tall on 8-20-17, #367-24.

The red flowers in this photo are Salvia coccinea. I always plant the bigger Colocasia esculenta in this bed and in 2017 I planted the Colocasia gigantea ‘Thailand Giant’. Of course, as always, I put a few Coleus in this bed as well…



Rudbeckia fulgida var. sullivantii ‘Goldsturm’ on 4-22-18, #428-7.

After a long cold winter, the Rudbeckia fulgida var. sullivantii ‘Goldsturm’ is coming up strong and ready for the summer of 2018.


Rudbeckia fulgida var. sullivantii ‘Goldsturm’ on 5-6-18, #436-46.

The above photo was taken on May 6, 2018 is of the plants in the northeast corner bed of the old foundation. There are still plants on the other side of the foundation and in the north bed by our house. I am thinking about purring a few back on the south side of the house and maybe in front of the chicken house and by the barn.

More photos to come as time goes by…

I hope you enjoyed this page and maybe found it useful. If you have any comments, questions or suggestions, I would like to hear from you. Please click on “like” if you visited this page. It helps us bloggers stay motivated. 🙂 You can check out the links below for further reading. The links take you directly to the genus and species of this plant.


*Plants of the World Online is still uploading data. This link will be updated as more information becomes available on this site.




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