Sneezeweed Helenium 'Kanaria'

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


Helenium 'Kanaria' is a vibrant perennial known for its showy flowers that resemble a colorful palette reminiscent of a canary's plumage. The plant is adorned with daisy-like flowers with a distinctive appearance. The blossoms are comprised of yellow petals that splay outwards around a prominent and raised central cone, which is typically brown or mahogany in color, adding an eye-catching contrast. The petals may be slightly ruffled or frilled, and they often have a warm, golden hue that deepens slightly towards the petal tips. The foliage of Helenium 'Kanaria' is equally attractive, providing a lush backdrop for the bright flowers. The leaves are generally lance-shaped or narrow, with a deep green color that complements the yellow blossoms. The plant has a bushy habit, with multiple stems emerging from the base, creating a full and robust appearance. The stems themselves are sturdy, holding up the flower heads with confidence. As a perennial, Helenium 'Kanaria' blooms for an extended period, providing color and interest in the garden from mid-summer into fall. When in full bloom, the plant becomes a hub of activity for pollinators such as butterflies and bees, which are attracted to the nectar-rich flowers. Once the blooming season concludes, the seed heads that follow can offer texture and visual interest, and can also attract birds to the garden. Overall, Helenium 'Kanaria' is celebrated for its beautiful display of golden-yellow flowers that bring a bright, joyful presence to any garden setting. Its appearance can offer a fresh burst of color that pairs well with other late-season bloomers and contributes to a lively and dynamic garden palette.

Plant Info
Common Problems

About this plant

  • memoNames

    • Family


    • Synonyms

      Canary Sneezeweed, Yellow Helenium

    • Common names

      Helenium 'Kanaria'.

  • skullToxicity

    • To humans

      Sneezeweed 'Kanaria' has compounds that may be toxic if ingested or handled improperly. While toxicity in humans from sneezeweed is generally considered low, ingestion of parts of the plant can lead to gastrointestinal upset, such as nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea. Handling the plant may cause skin irritation or an allergic reaction in some individuals. Caution is advised when dealing with the plant, and consumption should be avoided.

    • To pets

      Sneezeweed 'Kanaria' can be toxic to pets if ingested, potentially causing gastrointestinal issues such as vomiting and diarrhea. While sneezeweed doesn't rank high in toxicity, it's best to prevent pets from consuming the plant to avoid the risk of adverse reactions. If you suspect your pet has ingested sneezeweed, contact your veterinarian for appropriate advice and care.

  • infoCharacteristics

    • Life cycle


    • Foliage type


    • Color of leaves


    • Flower color


    • Height

      3-4 feet (0.9-1.2 meters)

    • Spread

      2 feet (0.6 meters)

    • Plant type


    • Hardiness zones


    • Native area

      North America


  • money-bagGeneral Benefits

    • Attracts Pollinators: Helenium 'Kanaria' is known to attract bees, butterflies, and other beneficial insects, helping to pollinate garden plants and nearby crops.
    • Easy to Grow: This plant is adaptable to a variety of soil conditions and is relatively low maintenance, making it suitable for gardeners of all skill levels.
    • Long Blooming Period: Helenium 'Kanaria' provides a long season of vibrant yellow flowers, adding color to the garden from mid-summer to fall.
    • Drought Tolerant: Once established, it is drought-tolerant, making it an excellent choice for xeriscaping and water-efficient gardening.
    • Deer Resistant: It is not a preferred choice for deer, thus it is less likely to be damaged by deer browsing.
    • Erosion Control: The extensive root system of Helenium 'Kanaria' helps stabilize soil and prevent erosion.
    • Landscaping: Its bright, cheerful flowers and upright habit make it an excellent addition to borders, wildflower meadows, and cottage gardens.
    • Cut Flowers: The blooms of Helenium 'Kanaria' make excellent cut flowers for arrangements, adding a splash of color indoors.

  • 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 'Kanaria', commonly known as Sneezeweed, can be used in natural dyeing processes to produce a range of colors from yellows to browns, depending on the mordant used.
    • The plant's strong stems make it suitable for use in informal flower arrangements and as a structural element in bouquets.
    • Dried heads of Sneezeweed can be used in craft projects, such as creating wreaths or dried flower displays for a rustic aesthetic.
    • The flowers of Sneezeweed can be pressed and used in botanical prints or to create natural art pieces.
    • Sneezeweed's vibrant and colorful petals can be incorporated into potpourri mixes for a touch of visual interest and a subtle, natural fragrance.
    • The plant can be used in educational settings, such as school gardens, to teach children about pollination and the importance of pollinators.
    • Sneezeweed can be planted in rain gardens as it tolerates wet soil and can help filter runoff water and improve water quality.
    • When included in a wildlife garden, Sneezeweed can provide a food source for caterpillars of certain butterfly species, thus contributing to biodiversity.
    • Garden enthusiasts can use Sneezeweed in photography projects to practice macro photography and capture the intricate details of its flowers.
    • As a late summer bloomer, Sneezeweed can be used in garden design to ensure a succession of bloom and maintain visual interest as the season progresses.

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

    • Grief: Helenium is also known as "sneezeweed," and although its name sounds humorous, it is historically associated with tears and grief, likely because the name helenium is tied to the Greek legend of Helen of Troy, whose abduction sparked the Trojan War.
    • Healing: Sneezeweed has been used in traditional medicine for its purported healing properties, particularly in treating sniffles and colds, which symbolizes its connection to healing and recovery.
    • Protection: In the past, it was believed that this plant could be used to ward off evil spirits, thus it symbolizes protection against negative influences.

Every 1-2 weeks
500 - 2500 Lux
Every 2-3 years
Late winter-early spring
As needed
  • water dropWater

    Sneezeweed 'Kanaria' requires consistent moisture, especially during its blooming period in summer and early fall. Water the plant deeply once or twice a week, providing it with about 1 to 1.5 inches of water. It is best to water at the base of the plant to avoid wetting the foliage, which can lead to fungal diseases. During particularly hot or dry periods, you may need to water more frequently to maintain soil moisture. However, be careful not to overwater and ensure good drainage to prevent root rot.

  • sunLight

    Sneezeweed 'Kanaria' thrives in full sun conditions, where it receives at least 6 hours of direct sunlight per day. The ideal spot for this perennial is an area with unobstructed sun exposure to ensure vigorous growth and abundant flowering. Partial shade is tolerated but may result in fewer flowers and a leggier plant.

  • thermometerTemperature

    Sneezeweed 'Kanaria' prefers a temperature range between 50°F and 80°F for optimal growth. It can tolerate temperatures down to 20°F, making it suitable for many temperate climates. To encourage the best flowering and health, keep the plant within this comfortable range, avoiding extreme heat or frost.

  • scissorsPruning

    Prune Sneezeweed 'Kanaria' to remove spent flowers and encourage a second bloom in late summer or early fall. Deadheading, or cutting off the old flower heads, will also keep the plant looking tidy and prevent self-seeding. Prune back the entire plant by about one-third in early to mid-summer to promote bushier growth and more flowers. The best time for major pruning is in late winter or early spring, cutting back old growth before new shoots emerge.

  • broomCleaning

    As needed

  • bambooSoil

    Sneezeweed 'Kanaria' prefers well-drained soil with a pH range of 5.5 to 7.5. A good soil mix would contain loamy garden soil, peat or compost for organic matter, and sand to improve drainage. Additionally, working in some perlite or vermiculite can help maintain soil aeration. Regular amendment with organic matter will keep the soil fertile and maintain its structure.

  • plantRepotting

    Sneezeweed 'Kanaria' typically does not require frequent repotting and is often left undisturbed for several years. It should be repotted or divided when it becomes noticeably overcrowded or when the plant's vigor seems to decline, which is generally every 3 to 4 years. Spring is the best time to repot or divide this perennial.

  • water dropsHumidity & Misting

    Sneezeweed 'Kanaria' is tolerant of a range of humidity levels but prefers conditions that are not excessively dry. Average ambient humidity is typically sufficient; no special humidity requirements are needed, as it is quite adaptable to various outdoor conditions.

  • pinSuitable locations

    • Indoor

      Place in bright indirect light and ensure proper drainage.

    • Outdoor

      Full sun to partial shade with moist soil.

    • Hardiness zone

      3-8 USDA

  • circleLife cycle

    Helenium 'Kanaria', commonly known as Kanaria Sneezeweed, begins its life cycle as a dormant seed, which upon receiving the right conditions of temperature and moisture, germinates and gives rise to seedlings. These seedlings develop into young plants with a rosette of leaves at ground level, and as they mature, they form a deep-rooting system and a sturdy stem. During spring and summer, which are its active growth period, the Kanaria Sneezeweed enters the vegetative stage, with leaves and stems growing until they reach the flowering stage. Typically in late summer to early fall, the plant produces vibrant, daisy-like yellow flowers that attract pollinators and lead to seed set. After pollination, seeds develop and are dispersed by wind, animals, or human activity, completing the reproductive cycle. Eventually, as temperatures drop in fall, the plant enters senescence with the above-ground portions dying back, while the roots may remain dormant in the soil until the next growing season.

  • sproutPropogation

    • Propogation time

      Late winter-early spring

    • Propogation: Helenium 'Kanaria', commonly known as sneezeweed, is best propagated by division, a method typically undertaken in the spring or early fall to allow ample time for establishment before the onset of extreme weather. To propagate sneezeweed by division, carefully dig up an established clump and gently separate it into smaller clumps, ensuring that each new section has a portion of the root system. Replant the divisions at the same depth they were previously growing, spacing them about 18 inches (approximately 45 cm) apart to allow for growth. Water the new divisions thoroughly to settle the soil around the roots and to help reduce transplant shock. This method allows gardeners to quickly increase their stock of Helenium 'Kanaria' while also rejuvenating older plants that may have become too large or crowded.