Coneflower – A Plant Of The Asteraceae Famliy
Coneflowers are popular perennials and they come in glorious shades of pink, orange, yellow, red and chartreuse. They bloom from June to August but the bloom time varies by species and cultivars. They belong to Daisy family that is Asteraceae and native to eastern United States. They grow up to 2 to 4 inches in height and have dark green foliage. The coneflowers have raised cone like centers which contains seeds and these attracts butterflies.
Their genus name is Echinacea that comes from the Latin name for hedgehog which refers to prickly lower stem of the plant. Coneflowers are the symbol of strength & healing and so you can use them as get well soon flowers.
Uses of Coneflower
- Coneflowers are best for traditional gardens and wildflower meadows as they look lovely in masses especially as a mix of various colors.
- To soothe sunburn apply the infusion of Echinacea.
- People use coneflowers in medical and ornamental purposes.
- Native Americans discovered that coneflowers have healing properties as wounded elks recuperate after consumption of coneflowers.
- Native Americans also extracted the juice from coneflower’s roots and used in the treatment of snake bites, sore throat, fever, open wounds and toothache.
- European immigrants started to sell coneflowers as herbal remedy for the purification of plants.
- Coneflowers are also used to boost immunity system and to alleviate the symptoms of flu and common cold.
- They attract birds and pollinators.
- They are heat and drought resistant.
- Coneflowers that started from seeds may take 2 to 3 years before producing blooms.
- Different varieties of this plants are Robert Bloom, Tennessee coneflower, Finale White and Cleopatra.
- Coneflowers have anti inflammatory and anti septic properties which is proved by modern science.
- They are also available in form of pills and tinctures.
- Coneflowers prefer well drained soil.
- They thrive in full sun.
How to plant
- Loosen the soul to the depth of 12 inches and add compost to the top 2 to 4 inches of soil.
- Seeds will take some 3 to 4 weeks to germinate.
- For transplanting dig a hole twice as wide as the pot and deep enough so the root ball will be in level with the top of the soil and do transplanting or dividing in spring or fall.
- You can propagate by dividing the clumps about every 4 years.
- They should be planted in spring or early summer.
- Plant coneflowers about 1 to 3 feet apart, depending upon the size of the plant variety.
Maintenance and Care
- These are easy care perennials and regular watering every week is required.
- A light layer of compost should be added in spring.
- Deadheading is important to encourage repeat blooming.
- In extremely dry season provide supplementary water.
- To prevent weeds put a thin layer of compost around the plant and then a 2 inch layer of mulch.
- Cut back in late winter or early spring when you are tidying up the garden.