In 1940, it was proposed to drape the winning horse in a garland of the Maryland State flower, Rudbeckia hirta, commonly called black-eyed Susans.
This posed a problem, as the race is run nearly two months before the flowers come into bloom in late June or July.
At first, yellow Viking daisies were painted to resemble black-eyed Susans. Painted flowers have been discontinued since the first decade of the current millennium and viking poms,
a member of the chrysanthemum family, are now used. Although the Preakness is sometimes referred to as "the race for the black-eyed Susans", no black-eyed Susan is ever used.