Helianthus mollis (Downy Sunflower) is a striking late summer bloomer with pleasant fuzzy foliage, which is where it gets it "downy" name. This plant is a spreader and is allelopathic (chemicals that inhibit the growth of other species) so be careful on small sites. On larger sites us it to your advantage to allow it to colonize its preferred habitat of poor, dry, rocky soils and mix in the diverse landscape. It can also be used to your advantage on sites where sustained groupings are desired, it will hold its own. It grows well on normal soil moisture but it can grow to be a bit taller than its preferred habitat type.
Frequently Asked Questions
Photo 1 Midwest Groundcovers
Photo 2 By peganum (https://www.flickr.com/photos/peganum/7920586770/) [CC BY-SA 2.0 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0)], via Wikimedia Commons