Pronounciation: Ech-i-NA-ce-a pur-pur-E-a
Landscape Use: Mixed flower borders, accent, containers
Form & Character: Strongly erect, stiff, and formal
Growth Habit: Hardy perennial grown as a winter and spring annual in Phoenix. Usually grows to about 1 to 5 feet tall with a moderate clumping habit spreading to 2 feet.
Foliage/Texture: Foliage is medium green, ovate to lanceolate, somewhat scabrous, aromatic; medium texture.
Flowers & Fruits: Terminal ray flowers with somewhat drooping pink, purple petals.
Seasonal Color: Blooms in early to mid spring though in other climates echinacea blooms during the summer.
Temperature: Prefers cooler Phoenix weather and spring conditions. Intolerant of summer heat.
Light: Full sun to partial shade
Soil: Not fussy, well drained and organic preferred in Phoenix area. Use of organic surface mulch to keep soils cooler longer during the warm spring will prolong plant viability as the Phoenix weather gets hot!!
Pruning: Not needed
Propagation: Allow seed heads to dry before seed harvest. Store seed dry and sow in the fall in Phoenix and other mild climates. In cooler climates where it's perennial habit is sustained, divide clumps every three to five years for best garden performance.
Disease and pests: None in the desert Southwest, but Japanese beetle and bacterial leaf spot are occasional problems in eastern Unied States landscape garden locations.
Additional comments: Echinacea is a nice old fashioned plant for mixed, mesic flower gardens that attracts butterflies and bees; seldom seen in Phoenix gardens. It performs oh so much better in the higher elevation cities of Arizona such as Prescott, Flagstaff and Payss a summer annual. There are nine known species of echinacea, all of which are native to the United States and southern Canada. The aboveground parts of the plant and roots of echinacea are used fresh or dried to make teas, squeezed (expressed) juice, extracts, or preparations for external use. Studies to date have not proven that echinacea shortens the course of colds or flu. Echinos is Greek for spiny and pointed like a sea urchin or hedgehog.