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APurple Coneflower Echinacea Purpurea

APurple Coneflower Echinacea Purpurea

APurple Coneflower Echinacea Purpurea

The genus name is from the Greek echinos, meaning "hedgehog," an allusion to the spiny, brownish central disk. The flowers of Echinacea species are used to make an extremely popular herbal tea, purported to help strengthen the immune system; an extract is also available in tablet or liquid form in pharmacies and health food stores. Often cultivated, Purple Coneflower is a showy, easily grown garden plant. Conditions Comments: Echinacea is a suitable addition to a prairie garden and attractive in flower arrangements. It is a popular perennial with smooth stems and long-lasting, lavender flowers. Rough, scattered leaves that become small toward the top of the stem. Flowers occur singly atop the stems and have domed, purplish-brown, spiny centers and drooping, lavender rays. Purple coneflower can become very aggressive.

Coneflower

Purple Coneflower is an herbaceous perennial in the Asteraceae (daisy) family that is native to central and eastern USA. It may grow 3 to 4 feet tall and produce pinkish-purple flowers that mature in early summer through mid-fall. Many cultivars are available for varied sizes and colors. Several pollinators are attracted to the flower, especially butterflies. Leave some of the flower heads on to produce seeds for the birds.Purple Coneflower blooms profusely for up to two months in mid to late summer and sometimes re-blooms in the fall. Perfect for both small gardens and large prairie meadows, the showy flowers are a favorite nectar source for butterflies, bees and myriad pollinators, including hummingbirds. In late summer the large seed heads attract Goldfinches and other birds.

Easy to grow, Echinacea purpurea prefers full to partial sun and mediumEchinacea thrive in our gardens when provided with well drained soils, plenty of sunshine and moderate to dry moisture conditions depending on the species and cultivars. Healthy individual coneflowers will grow in the garden for 3 to 5 years. Species and cultivars raised from seed will often reseed themselves to continue their presence in our gardens. Growth is best in fertile loam, but it will tolerate clay or dryer conditions. It is somewhat drought resistant, but the entire plant may wilt if the soil becomes too dry in strong sunlight. Uncommon in the wild, it is readily available commercially, and the seed is often used in land restoration. Echinacea species were used by Native Americans for medicinal purposes and are still used today in herbal medicine and tea.Echinacea, commonly called Coneflower, has been cultivated as a hardy and showy perennial since the 1700s, both in North America and Europe. Truly an American plant, native to the central and eastern part of the country, it was used by the early native Americans to cure wounds and infections. A great prairie flower, its bright and large blossoms made a successful transition to the backyard. Traditionally purple, with ray flowers that droop downward off the central cone, Coneflowers today enjoy a rich variety of colors and flower shapes with ray florets held horizontal, single or even doubled, giving them the look of Chrysanthemum. Easily grown from seed, they thrive on neglect. (Source: www.gardenia.net)

 

 

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