How to Grow Bidens

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Bidens is a short-lived perennial that bears bright golden yellow daisy-like flowers with a light honey fragrance. Biden leaves are bright green and divided into threadlike segments.

Bidens is a small mounding, spreading, and training plant. It grows 7 to 24 inches tall and about 24 inches wide. It is well-suited for flower borders. It can be planted in containers and hanging baskets where it will trail over the sides. Bidens attracts butterflies and bees.

Bidens is a genus of about 200 species of annuals, perennials, and shrubs. All bear clusters of dislike flowers. The species Bidens ferulifolia is commonly grown in gardens.

Bidens is a subtropical plant. It is native to Mexico and Guatemala. It must be overwintered indoors in cold winter regions.

Bidens ferulifolia
Bidens ferulifolia

Get to know Bidens

  • Plant type: Short-lived perennial
  • Growing zones and range: Zones 8 to 11
  • Hardiness: Hardy to Zone 8
  • Height and width: 12 inches (30cm) tall and wide
  • Folaige: 1 to 3 pinnate green leaves with lance-shaped leaflets
  • Flowers: Daisy-like, golden-yellow flowers; flowers have a honey fragrance
  • Bloom time: Summer to autumn
  • Uses: Border, container, hanging basket
  • Common name: Bidens
  • Botanical name: Bidens
  • Family name: Asteracea
  • Origin: Southern Mexico and Guatemala

Where to plant Bidens

  • Plant Bidens in full sun.
  • Plant Bidens in humus-rich, well-drained soil.

When to plant Bidens

  • Set container-grown Bidens in the garden in spring.

Planting and spacing Bidens

  • Space Bidens 12 inches (30cm) apart.

How to water and feed Bidens

  • Bidens grow best in moist, but not wet soil.
  • Fertilize Bidens with an all-purpose, slow-release organic fertilizer in spring.

Bidens care

  • Deadhead Bidens to encourage continued blooming.

Bidens pests and diseases

  • Bidens is prone to mottle virus, leaf spot, whtie smut, downy mildew, powdery mildew and rust.
  • Bidens can be attacked by leaf miners and aphids.
Bidens 'Blazing Fire'
Bidens ‘Blazing Fire’

Bidens propagation

  • Sow seed in warm soil in spring.
  • Root stem cuttings in spring or autumn.
  • Divide perennial Bidens in spring.

Bidens varieties to grow

  • Bidens ferulifolia. Spreading tender perennial grows to 12 inches tall; lacy, deeply divided leaves; bears golden yellow, 1 ¼ – to 1 ½ -inch-wide, daisylike flower heads from summer to fall. Cultivar ‘Golden Goddess’ bears 2-inch-wide flowers. Overwinter plants or grow as an annual. Cultivars include: ‘Golden Eye’ grow mounded 10 to 12 inches tall and slightly wider’; ‘Goldilocks Rocks’ grow mounded to 14 inches tall and wide; ‘Namid Compact Yellow’ grows mounded, 7 inches tall, 16 inches wide. 

Written by Stephen Albert

Stephen Albert is a horticulturist, master gardener, and certified nurseryman who has taught at the University of California for more than 25 years. He holds graduate degrees from the University of California and the University of Iowa. His books include Vegetable Garden Grower’s Guide, Vegetable Garden Almanac & Planner, Tomato Grower’s Answer Book, and Kitchen Garden Grower’s Guide. His Vegetable Garden Grower’s Masterclass is available online. has more than 10 million visitors each year.

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