We're partial, of course, to our own selection of the Purple Coneflower, but we find real value in this popular variety, whose petals are an especially vibrant carmine-rose shade and are held almost horizontally, making a more open face than the shuttlecock shape of the species. Lovely with the blue wands of Perovskia, another stalwart of the late-summer garden.
Echinacea, a North American genus in the Daisy family, has big, bright flowers that appear in late June and keep coming into September. Plants thrive in average soils or hot, dry conditions, shrug off cold, and are equally at home in full sun or partial shade. Blooms last well as cut or dried flowers, and the large cone at the heart of the flower head turns black as the seeds mature, adding further interest and providing nourishment for goldfinches. We offer three excellent strains of Purple Coneflower, E. purpurea, a rugged species that is native from Iowa and Ohio south to Louisiana and Georgia, and is a great garden plant everywhere in between.