You can buy commercially-prepared echinacea to make tea, but beware. WedMD warns that some echinacea teas are mislabeled and may contain harmful or even toxic ingredients. Some gardeners make their own tea by brewing a teaspoon or two of dried echinacea in boiling water, and adding a little honey for sweetening. These plants are often used to fight flu and other infections. Shown here: ornamental Big Sky™ 'Summer Sky'™ coneflower Echinacea purpurea x paradoxa.
This familiar plant helped launch fresh interest in prairie flowers and has been hybridized into a rainbow of new colors. Get a true native variety, such as pale purple coneflower with drooping petals (Echinacea pallida), for long-lasting blooms and more drought tolerance. There also are yellow varieties, such as Ozark coneflower (Echinacea paradoxa). With several varieties planted, you can keep flowers blooming for three months to keep attracting pollinators. Don’t deadhead and let them go to seed if you want to attract goldfinches.
A true native purple coneflower (Echinacea) has thin, reflexed petals in pale shades. The purple coneflowers with bright, colorful blooms in perennial gardens are typically hybrids of native wildflowers like this.
A white picket fence helps provide the structure for the this gorgeous cottage-style garden. Another perennial garden surrounds the gazebo, which is illuminated at night. Posted by HGTV fan retired editor.
The flowering plants are primarily pink, white, yellow and blue, a soft palette that complements the natural shingles of the home. Flowering shrubs, roses, perennials, annuals and spring bulbs ensure that the garden is in bloom from March until late fall. Plants like iris, alliums, echinacea, roses and foxglove emphasize the cottage style of this colorful garden.
Echibeckia combines the winter hardiness of purple coneflower (Echinacea) with the fast growth and sunny flower colors of black-eyed susan (Rudbeckia). The result is a stunning beauty that makes the most humble jar vase beam with good looks. Flowers stand atop sturdy stems and appear all summer long—without deadheading. Rabbit- and deer-resistant plants grow 20 to 24 inches tall and 16 to 18 inches wide. Hardy in Zones 6-10. Good vase companions for echibeckia: bee balm, mints, ninebark and purple verbena.
Ornamental grasses combine well with perennials, especially native plants like Tennessee purple coneflower (Echinacea tennesseensis). A planting partner for purple coneflower is ‘Blonde Ambition’ blue grama grass (Bouteloua ‘Blonde Ambition’), which offers a strong stem structure that stands up to summer storms and winter snow. ‘Blonde Ambition’ doesn’t self-sow aggressively, so it won’t take over perennial plantings. This plant combination is ideal for a wildlife-friendly garden. ‘Blonde Ambition’ grows 28 to 32 inches tall and wide. Hardy in Zones 4-9.
If you only grow one native plant, it should be purple coneflower (Echinacea purpurea). This classic beauty is well-known for its immune-boosting effects, but in gardening circles, it’s famous for its wildlife appeal. Pollinators of all sorts visit the flowers, and goldfinches flock to feast on hedgehog-like seedheads. The blooms make long-lasting additions to summer bouquets. Grows 24 to 60 inches tall by 18 to 24 inches wide. Hardy in Zones 3-8. Look for new varieties that grow to shorter sizes and open flowers in a rainbow of colors.
A classic native wildflower, purple coneflower (Echinacea purpurea) brings a steady stream of color to gardens all summer long. It’s a hearty plant, withstanding full sun, drought and poor soil of all sorts (clay, rocky, shallow). Plant breeders have worked to improve this flower powerhouse by expanding blossom color and form. The result? You can find (no longer purple) coneflower plants in a rainbow of shades, including red, gold, white, orange and pink. This variety is PowWow Wildberry, which unfurls vivid rose-purple blooms. Coneflowers are deer- and rabbit-resistant. Purple coneflower grows 24 to 60 inches tall and 18 to 24 inches wide. Some newer varieties grow shorter. Hardy in Zones 3-8. Good vase companions for purple coneflower: Oriental or Asiatic lily, Russian sage, catmint, hosta and gas plant.