Grow in average, medium moisture, well-drained soil in full sun. Prefers clay or sandy soils. Tolerates poor, dry soils.
Ratibida pinnata, commonly called gray headed coneflower, is a Missouri native plant which typically occurs in dry woods, prairies and along railroad tracks and roads. A somewhat rough-looking plant that features pinnately divided leaves (to 5″ long) on stiff stems growing 3-5′ tall. The composite flowers have a dull-gray central disk in the shape of an elongated cylinder (1 inch long), somewhat resembling the crown of a slender sombrero. When bruised, the disk smells of anise. Attached to the bottom of the disk is a brim of 3-7, extremely reflexed (downward pointing), bright yellow ray flowers (to 3″ long). Long summer bloom period.