Coneflowers have attractive flowers.
image by All images and illustrations by Daniel Ray
Coneflowers are a perennial plant native to the United States. The scientific name is Echinacea purpurea, which may be familiar to some because of the common herbal supplement that is produced from the roots. The coneflower has a large taproot and is drought tolerant. The purple flower is attractive to both humans and wildlife. Since coneflowers do well without much water or fertilizer, their lack of upkeep makes them an excellent addition to any garden. Coneflowers will readily reseed and will produce a nice bed after several years.
Pick a spot that receives full sun and is well drained. Eliminate weeds and grass with an herbicide. In lieu of the herbicide, the bed can be covered with black plastic, which will also kill the grass over time.
Prepare the soil by removing all of the dead grass and weeds. Break up the soil with a shovel or hoe. Add compost if the soil needs to be enriched.
Sow the seeds into the soil. Combine the seeds with 2 or 3 cups of sand. Mixing the seeds with masonry sand makes broadcasting the seeds easier.
Walk on the seedbed to set them into the soil. Avoid burying the seeds deeply into the earth. Instead of walking, a rake can be used to lightly cover the seeds with soil.
Water the seedbed regularly. Germination time will be between 15 to 30 days.