Dictionary of Flowers: Bidens (Golden Goddess)

Bidens, also known as Golden Goddess, daisy-like flowers. Image used under a Creative Commons licence with the kind permission of tdlucas5000 and Flickr
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Bidens, also known as Golden Goddess, daisy-like flowers. Image used under a Creative Commons licence with the kind permission of tdlucas5000 and Flickr

  • Bidens
  • Common name: bidens, golden goddess
  • Family: Asteraceae
  • Annual, half hardy, frost sensitive
  • Height: 12" to 18" 
  • Width: 18" to 24"
  • Sun
  • Blooms: summer to mid-fall
  • Attracts: bees, butterflies
  • Growth habit: erect or trailing. Used as filler or spiller in container combinations
  • Maintenance: easy
  • Soil: average to rich, evenly moist well drained. Water regularly if grown in containers; never allow the container to dry completely.
  • Garden uses: containers, baskets, cutting garden, mixed border, meadow garden
  • Diseases: not prone to disease
  • Pests: aphids

Bidens is a genus of flowering annuals that has become popular in the last few years.

The daisy-like small flowers with five petals arranged like a star are bright yellow with a yellow center. The plant leaves are lacy and finely cut.

They grow easily on any type of soil, require an average amount of water, though plants not getting enough water tend to bloom less. Some varieties are somewhat drought tolerant.

Deadhead for continuous bloom from early summer to fall and to prevent self-seeding. The species b. ferulifolia is less likely to self-seed than other bidens, which are actually considered noxious weeds in some areas. 

Bidens is readily available in nurseries as starter plants, perfect for a splash of color in container combinations. They can be overwintered indoors in cold areas.

In very warm, frost free climates (USDA zones 8-11) it acts as a perennial and can survive winters outdoors. 

IWILLWRITECAPTION. Image used under a Creative Commons licence with the kind permission of NAMEOFFLICKRUSER and Flickr

Bidens is available in nurseries as starter plants. Plant bidens seed in early spring indoors, six to eight weeks before the last frost date.

Bidens seed will germinate in one or two weeks if kept at 60F. Barely cover the seed pressed lightly onto the moist starting mix.

Thin the seedlings after they have a pair or two of true leaves, harden off for a few days and plant outdoors when all danger of frost has passed.

Stem cuttings can be taken in spring or fall. Bidens benefits from regular fertilizing during late spring and summer.

Feed with a bloom boosting formula, mixed according to manufacturer's directions. Pinch back tips to encourage bushiness.  




IWILLWRITECAPTION. Image used under a Creative Commons licence with the kind permission of NAMEOFFLICKRUSER and Flickr

Bidens is not bothered by diseases or pests. Occasionally, aphids can be a problem. Treat with insecticidal soap or knock down with a blast of water. 

Popular varieties:

  • Bidens ferulifolia 'Peter's Gold Carpet' - bedding plant, compact with large flowers that are slightly scented
  • Bidens ferulifolia 'Goldilocks Rocks' - mounding growth, drought tolerant
  • Bidens ferulifolia 'Hawaiian Flare' - new variety. Bicolored flowers, orange and yellow and red. Spreading habit
  • Bidens ferulifolia 'Solaire Yellow' - semi trailing, vigourous variety

IWILLWRITECAPTION. Image used under a Creative Commons licence with the kind permission of NAMEOFFLICKRUSER and Flickr

Full List of Dictionary of Flowers Entries

Annuals For Containers

Perennials For Containers

Go from Bidens (Golden Goddess) to the Dictionary of Flowers

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