Stiff Goldenrod, Solidago rigida, is an upright unbranched native perennial wildflower with sturdy pubescent stems, from which it gets its common name. Widely adaptable, it thrives in most inhospitable soils, including a range of conditions from clay to dry sand. Flat topped, brilliant yellow corymb-like flower clusters top a central stem from July-October, which are highly attractive to pollinators, particularly Monarch Butterflies during their fall migration. The stiff stems serve as perches for songbirds, and the seed heads are a preferred and important late fall bird food source. This goldenrod readily self-seeds so the removal of seed heads may be required in small settings to control unwanted spread. Architecturally stunning with many ecosystem services, Stiff Goldenrod is a must for the fall garden.
Photo: Prairie Nursery