Common name: Indian blanket flower, blanket flower, firewheel
Botanical name: Gaillardia pulchella
Virtues: Adaptable. Tolerates, or even prefers, hot, dry conditions. Bright summer color.
Flowers: Daisy-like flowers with red ray petals and a red central disc. The petals are tipped in yellow. Blooms through mid- and late summer.
Habit: Upright annual to 2 feet tall.
Season: Summer. Origin: Dry plains and open areas of the Midwest, Colorado and Arizona.
Cultivation: Grow in full sun, in sandy soil. Tolerates other kinds of soil, but requires good drainage and prefers dry conditions. Seedlings may appear in spring if its seed is allowed to fall to the ground in the fall. Annual.
Horticulture January 2010 is available as a download; it includes 50 great native plants.