Sign up for our newsletter
Gardening in the Rainy Zone.
Pronounced: ek-in-AY-see-ah pur-PEWR-ree-ah
Sunset zones: A2, A3; 1-24.
USDA zones: 3-9.
Heat zones: 9-1.
Height: 2-3 feet (60-90cm).
Width: 18 inches (45 cm).
Midsummer to early autumn.
Brown disks surrounded by purple-red reflexed petals.
Hairy, ovate basal 6-inch leaves.
Humus rich, well-drained soil.
Side dress with compost or manure. Fertilize in spring with a complete organic fertilizer.
Sow seed at 68°F (20°C) in spring.
Divide in autumn of spring.
Dead head flowers for longer bloom period.
Pests and Diseases:
Leaf miners and occassionally powdery mildew and fungal leaf spots are a problem.
Rainy Side Notes
Echinacea comes from the Greek word echinos that refers to the prickly receptacle scales; purpurea means purple flower.
My first echinacea I grew years ago was one of my favorites in the herb garden. With many new hybrids in the coneflower clan, this tends to take a back seat to the cultivars.
Deer resistant, Echinaceas are great butterfly, bird and bee plants. Leaving the seed heads in place will bring in flocks of goldfinches, who devour the seeds over winter.For fresh flowers, it is best to harvest when petals are expanding. Flowers last 7-10 days in a vase when a preservative is used. When harvesting only for the orange disk, allow the petals to mature before harvesting so the petals will be easy to remove. For drying purposes, remove petals and hang to dry.
Photographed in author's garden.
Perennials indexed by botanical names. Click on corresponding letter below.