Echinacea pallida (Nutt.) Nutt.
Pale Purple Coneflower, Pale Echinacea
Rudbeckia pallida, Echinacea pallida f. pallida, Echinacea pallida var. pallida, Brauneria pallida
Color: Pale pinkish-purple
Bloom Time: Summer
Echinacea pallida is a coarse hairy perennial that grows up to 4 feet (1.2 m) tall. It features narrow, parallel-veined, toothless, up to 10 inches (25 cm) long, dark green leaves and large daisy-like flowers with drooping pale pinkish-purple petals and spiny knob-like coppery-orange center cones. In summer, the flowers appear on rigid, up to 3 feet (90 cm) tall stems, with sporadic continued bloom into fall.
USDA hardiness zone 3a to 10b: from −40 °F (−40 °C) to 40 °F (+4.4 °C).
How to Grow and Care
Coneflowers are often listed as drought tolerant, but they will do much better with regular water. I leave the plants standing through winter to feed the birds. Shearing them back in the spring will result in bushier plants that bloom longer into the season. Deadheading is the primary maintenance required with Coneflowers. They are prolific bloomers, and keeping them deadheaded will keep them in bloom all summer. Luckily each flower remains in bloom for several weeks. Flowers start blooming from the top of the stem. As the initial flower fades, more side shoots and buds will form along the stem. Keep the plants deadheaded, and you'll keep getting more flowers.
If you don't want to start your own seeds, plenty of varieties are available for purchase as plants, especially through mail order. Plants can also be divided or grown from stem cuttings. Coneflower can be planted in either spring or fall. Be sure to allow for good air circulation to prevent fungal diseases.
See more at How to Grow and Care for Coneflower.
This species is native to the United States (in the Mississippi Valley, the southeastern Great Plains, and the region south of Lake Michigan).
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