How To Grow Echinacea plants and Reader Reviews of Varieties
Sunshine: Plant in full sun or very light shade (late evening) Needs noonday sun.
Height: from 24 to 36 inches tall (60cm to 1m)
Flowering time: mid summer to fall
Flower color: whites, yellows, shades of red-pinks
Width: 18-30 inches (45-75 cm) depending on maturity
Hardiness: USDA zone 3
Soils: Just about all but prefers good drainage
Propagation: species by seed, hybrids by cutting or division
Coneflower are excellent plants for general garden use because of their hardiness, insect and disease resistance as well as their long bloom time. It is easy to see why this plant has quickly risen to the top of the gardener's palette.
It's pretty much a plant and forget kind of perennial, something that every gardener can succeed with.
Having said that - do not allow first year hybrid plants to bloom. Cut off all blooms to allow the strength of the plant to develop good roots. Premature winter death is often the result of allowing an Echinacea to bloom in its first year.
To Get Optimum Blooms
Now, surviving doesn't necessarily mean thriving so if you want it to really grow and flower properly, you want to provide several things:
Great fertility. I feed echinacea plants first thing in the spring and again at mid-summer to keep them growing.
Well drained, fertile soils. The better the soil, the better the plant. This is basic gardening. While coneflower are native North American plants, suited for prairie growing, they do grow much better when given a bit of food and good soils.
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This is an excellent plant for massed plantings. I've seen large gardens just crammed with them and it is an awesome garden sight.
It's an excellent plant for naturalizing. Use the species that will self-sow and come true (remember hybrids don't come true from seed).
It is an excellent display plant. If you have just one of the newer hybrids, you can use it as a “specimen” plant to stand out in your garden. You won't be disappointed in its blooming.
Echinacea plants make great cut flowers. I can never stand to cut them but they do last a long time in the vase
Echinacea plants have great seed pods beloved of chickadees and other seed-eating birds. It will be rare to see any of these seeds survive a serious bird feast.
Perovskia and Echinacea combination
Review Your Echinacea Variety Here
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