Saturday, June 20, 2015

Cone Flowers – A Hardy and Beautiful Perennial for Summer Gardens

Pink Cone Flower and Bee

If you are looking for a colorful and hardy flower for your flower garden, the family of cone flowers is an excellent choice! The cone flowers, properly called Echinacea, are a hardy and long blooming flower.

They get the name “cone flower” from the way the daisy like flower petals angle backwards appearing similar to a cone. They are native to the central and eastern parts of the US and are considered perennials in zones 3 through 9. 

Pink Cone Flowers from my Garden

The cone flower is drought tolerant and long blooming, blooming from early summer to late fall. They come in a wide variety of colors ranging from white, pink, purple and red. Some hybrid varieties are yellow, orange and even green.

Cone flowers grow best with at least 5 hours of full sun. They like loamy soil but will grow in almost any soil condition. For best results, in hard soil, add peat moss to help soften the soil and keep moist, but not soggy. I mulch them heavily to cut down on watering time and it seems to make their colors even brighter.

Deadheading your flowers is important to keep them blooming until early fall. I prefer to deadhead mine once the flower has begun to turn brown and I see a new bloom appearing.  I will take the flower I have just removed and poke it into the ground. I don’t know if this really works, but I always have new little plants popping up during the season. 

Cone flowers are great for attracting bees and butterflies.

 If you enjoy attracting butterflies to your flower gardens, get ready as cone flowers are great for attracting butterflies, bees and birds. They also make great cut flowers as their blooms are long lasting when you bring them inside.

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Pink Coneflower and Bee Tote Bag - $10.95

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