Lanceleaf blanket flower
This wildflower (Gaillardia aestivalis) is sometimes called the Sandhill blanket flower because it usually grows in open and dry sandy areas. One of the reasons it may get its common name of blanket flower is because large numbers of these plants can cover a large area of ground. The plants may grow to two feet tall, a single flower to a long stem. It is in the composite family; the center of the flower is composed of many small dark purple disk flowers, which are surrounded by widely spaced yellow three-toothed ray flowers. This wildflower is distinct from other flowers growing in the sandhills. When the ray flowers fall off, the disk flowers which persist in an attractive form.