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“Why do you think I have this outrageous accent?” (Gaillardia Part 2)

“Why do you think I have this outrageous accent?” (Gaillardia Part 2)

Posted by John Friel on Mar 8th 2021

So you think Latin names are difficult, you silly English-speaking person? Hah!

Let’s examine first a popular perennial, then the less-familiar story behind its name.


A backbone of the sunny garden, “blanket flower” is known and loved world-wide for its array of bright, cheerful, often bicolor blooms.

Complex daisy-like flowers feature a plethora of petals with toothy, pointed or fluted tips. Puffy gold/red centers remain attractive and interesting even after petals fade.

As you might guess from the color range, all in the warm end of the spectrum, this American native genus is most widespread in the West and Southwest.

We grow an even dozen varieties. They’re all very nice, but here are a few highlights. 

xgrandiflora Arizona Series

‘Arizona Apricot’

‘Arizona Red Shades’, 

and ‘Arizona Sun’ comprise this AAS-Award-winning group. Big 3 – 3½” daisies last summer-fall. First year flowering with no vernalization required, so they go from zero to retail-ready in record time. Hardy in Zones 3 – 10. Height 12”.

xgrandiflora Mesa series

Intense colors, drought-tolerance and uniformity – what more can you ask? Choose from; 

‘Mesa Bright Bicolor’,

‘Mesa Peach’,

‘Mesa Red

or ‘Mesa Yellow’

or come to think of it, why choose? Try ‘em all! Height 14 – 20”. Hardy in Zones 5 – 10.

What’s in a Nom?

Gaillardia is named for one Antoine Rene’ Gaillard de Charentonneau. We dare you to say that five times, fast. This French magistrate and amateur botanist paid plant explorers to ship him plants and seeds from the French colonies in the mid-18th century, and shared them with fellow scientists and plant enthusiasts.

It Gets Worse

Yes, Monsieur Gaillard’s moniker is a tongue-twister, but it’s child’s play compared to Auguste Denis Fougeroux de Bondaroy. That’s the plant physiologist and naturalist who named Gaillardia in Antoine’s honor in 1788.

Shed some sunlight – the more the better – on a little French/American history. The best Gaillardia on either side of the ocean come in easy-planting, quick-finishing 72-cell liners from Emerald Coast Growers – your easy choice!

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