Sneezeweed Helenium 'Karneol'

☠ Toxic to humans
🐾 Toxic to pets
🌸 Blooming
🍪 Not edible
‍🌱 Easy-care
sneezeweed 'Karneol'


The Helenium 'Karneol,' commonly known as Sneezeweed, showcases a striking display of flowers that are sure to be a standout in any garden setting. The plant boasts a profusion of daisy-like blossoms with a unique appearance, each flower featuring a distinctive set of characteristics. The petals appear in warm shades of orange and red, often radiating from the center in a gradient effect that adds depth and complexity to the bloom. These petals are arranged in a slightly reflexed manner, which means they gently curl downward, giving the flowers an elegant and whimsical look. At the heart of each flower, there is a prominent central cone that is typically brown or mahogany in color, creating a striking contrast with the fiery tones of the petals. This cone is not only a visual focal point but also serves as a magnet for pollinators, attracting bees and butterflies with its rich supply of nectar and pollen. The foliage of Sneezeweed is deep green, forming an attractive backdrop for the vivid blossoms. The leaves are narrow and pointed, with a slightly toothed edge, and they are arranged along the stems to create a lush, full appearance. Overall, the Sneezeweed 'Karneol' is a vibrant and eye-catching plant that adds color and texture to the landscape from mid-summer into fall.

Plant Info
Common Problems

About this plant

  • memoNames

    • Synonyms

      Sneezeweed, Helen's Flower.

    • Common names

      Helenium 'Karneol'.

  • skullToxicity

    • To humans

      Sneezeweed is not typically considered highly toxic to humans. However, it can cause mild irritation if its sap comes into contact with skin, and ingestion may result in gastrointestinal discomfort, such as nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea. It is advisable to handle plants with care and avoid ingesting any parts of the plant to prevent possible adverse reactions.

    • To pets

      Sneezeweed can be toxic to pets if ingested, causing symptoms such as drooling, vomiting, and diarrhea. While it's not generally known as one of the most toxic plants for pets, it is still recommended to keep an eye on your pet and prevent them from consuming parts of the plant to avoid any potential health issues. If you suspect your pet has ingested sneezeweed, contact a veterinarian.

  • infoCharacteristics

    • Life cycle


    • Foliage type


    • Color of leaves


    • Flower color


    • Height

      3-4 feet (0.91-1.22 meters)

    • Spread

      2 feet (0.61 meters)

    • Plant type


    • Hardiness zones


    • Native area

      North America


  • money-bagGeneral Benefits

    • Attracts pollinators: Helenium 'Karneol' is known for its ability to attract bees, butterflies, and other beneficial insects to the garden.
    • Low maintenance: Once established, it requires minimal care, making it suitable for gardeners of all skill levels.
    • Drought tolerance: It can withstand periods of dry weather, reducing the need for frequent watering.
    • Long blooming period: The plant flowers from mid-summer to autumn, offering vibrant colors over an extended time.
    • Improves biodiversity: By attracting various pollinators, it contributes to the ecological health of your garden.
    • Versatile in landscaping: Perfect for borders, mass plantings, and as a colorful addition to wildlife gardens.
    • Deer resistance: Helenium 'Karneol' is not a preferred plant for deer, reducing the risk of damage from wildlife.

  • medicalMedical Properties

    This plant is not used for medical purposes.

  • windAir-purifying Qualities

    This plant is not specifically known for air purifying qualities.

  • leavesOther Uses

    • Helenium 'Karneol', also known as sneezeweed, can be used as a natural dye for fabrics, offering hues from yellow to orange depending on the mordant used.
    • The vibrant flowers of the sneezeweed can be pressed and used in decorative art, such as creating unique botanical prints or in paper making.
    • Sneezeweed petals can be incorporated into potpourri mixes for their color and to contribute to the overall aesthetic of the blend.
    • The plant can serve as a biological indicator for an ecosystem, as it thrives in certain soil conditions, indicating the health of a particular habitat.
    • Dried sneezeweed has been used as a component in homemade insect repellent sachets when combined with other repellent herbs.
    • In educational settings, sneezeweed can be used to illustrate pollination and the attractiveness of different flower colors to pollinators like bees and butterflies.
    • Flowers of the Helenium 'Karneol' can be used in crafting, such as making natural flower crowns or adding a rustic touch to handmade greeting cards.
    • The stems and foliage of sneezeweed can be used in weaving projects for creating garden structures like trellises or decorative garden fencing.
    • Cut flowers of sneezeweed can serve as a natural pest deterrent when placed around outdoor seating areas, due to their strong scent.
    • Sneezeweed plants can be strategically planted to prevent soil erosion due to their robust root systems that help stabilize the soil.

Interesting Facts

  • bedFeng Shui

    The Sneezeweed is not used in Feng Shui practice.

  • aquariusZodiac Sign Compitability

    The Sneezeweed is not used in astrology practice.

  • spiralPlant Symbolism

    • Healing: Helenium 'Karneol', commonly known as Helen's Flower or Sneezeweed, often symbolizes healing due to the plant's historical use in medicinal remedies.
    • Remembrance: Its name derives from Helen of Troy, and with such origins, it has become a symbol of remembrance, either for a person or a past event.
    • Tears: The legend of Helen of Troy also adds a layer of symbolism related to tears, possibly representing sorrow or remorse.
    • Overcoming adversity: Helen's Flower thrives in tough conditions and can symbolize someone's ability to overcome challenges or adverse situations.

Every 2-3 days
2500 - 10000 Lux
Every 2-3 years
Late summer-early fall
As needed
  • water dropWater

    Sneezeweed should be watered deeply and thoroughly, ensuring that the soil is moistened to a depth of several inches. Ideally, provide about 1 inch of water per week, accounting for rainfall. In hotter, drier climates, or during weeks of little to no rainfall, water twice a week. A consistent watering schedule is essential during the first growing season to establish a deep, extensive root system. Reduce watering frequency to once a week once the plant is established, and always check soil moisture before watering to prevent overwatering.

  • sunLight

    Sneezeweed thrives in full sun, which means it requires a minimum of 6 hours of direct sunlight each day. The best spot for these flowers would be in an area that receives unfiltered sunlight for the majority of the day. Partial shade is acceptable, especially in areas with intense afternoon sun, but too much shade can lead to leggy plants and fewer blooms.

  • thermometerTemperature

    Sneezeweed is hardy and can tolerate a range of temperatures, but it prefers a moderate climate. The ideal temperature for optimal growth is between 50°F and 75°F. It can survive minimum temperatures down to 0°F, and maximum temperatures up to 90°F, but prolonged exposure to temperatures outside the ideal range may affect its health and blooming.

  • scissorsPruning

    Prune sneezeweed to stimulate bushier growth and more flower heads. Deadhead regularly during the blooming season to encourage continuous flowering. At the end of the blooming season, cut back the stems to 2 inches above the ground level, which helps maintain a tidy appearance and prepares the plant for the next growing season. The best time for a major cutback is late fall or early spring.

  • broomCleaning

    As needed

  • bambooSoil

    Helenium, commonly known as Sneezeweed, requires well-draining soil rich in organic matter. A good mix would include garden soil, compost, and perlite or coarse sand to improve drainage. The best pH for Sneezeweed soil is slightly acidic to neutral, ranging from 5.5 to 7.0.

  • plantRepotting

    Sneezeweed typically does not require frequent repotting as it is usually grown as a perennial in outdoor gardens. Dividing the plant every 2 to 3 years in early spring is recommended to maintain vigor and control its spread.

  • water dropsHumidity & Misting

    Sneezeweed prefers outdoor conditions where it can receive natural ambient humidity. It does not require specific humidity levels but thrives in a range typical of outdoor garden environments.

  • pinSuitable locations

    • Indoor

      Grow in sunny spot; keep soil moist, not soggy.

    • Outdoor

      Plant in sunny location; enrich soil with compost.

    • Hardiness zone

      3-9 USDA

  • circleLife cycle

    The Sneezeweed 'Karneol' (Helenium 'Karneol') starts its life as a seed that germinates in early spring when soil temperatures warm sufficiently. Seedlings emerge and establish a root system and basal rosette of leaves, followed by vertical stem growth as temperatures rise. Throughout the growing season, the plant develops multiple stems bearing narrowly ovate leaves, and by mid to late summer, it produces numerous daisy-like flower heads with a central disk and colorful ray florets. After pollination by insects, the flowers mature into seed heads that disperse seeds in late autumn, which can lead to the germination of new plants the following spring. During winter, Sneezeweed 'Karneol' dies back to the ground, entering a period of dormancy, but the perennial root systems survive to send up new shoots once the weather warms. This cycle repeats annually, with the plant potentially expanding its presence in the garden through both seed and clonal growth via spreading rhizomes.

  • sproutPropogation

    • Propogation time

      Late summer-early fall

    • Helenium 'Karneol', commonly known as Sneezeweed, can be propagated through division, which is the most popular method for this perennial plant. The best time to divide Sneezeweed is in the spring or early fall when the plant is not in active bloom. To propagate by division, carefully dig up the clump of the plant, ensuring to maintain as many roots intact as possible. Gently break the clump into smaller sections, each with several shoots and a healthy portion of roots. Replant the sections into well-prepared soil, spacing them approximately 18 inches (around 45 centimeters) apart to allow for sufficient growth and air circulation. Water the new plantings thoroughly to help establish the roots. Dividing these plants every few years also helps to invigorate their growth and can prevent the center of the clump from dying out.