August Perennial of the Month : Echinacea


The Echinacea (Coneflower) at the market is putting on quite a show right now! These tough, enthusiastic plants are easy to grow in most gardens. Stop by and enjoy all the summer color in our perennial area and display gardens!

Perennial Manager Jaime Brennan tells us about Echinacea, the perennial of the month here at Kirby's:

"Echinacea has been around for a long time (North American Plains Indians used it for a variety of medicinal purposes. They learned about it by watching injured or sick elk that sought out the plant!) and is a plant that is shared between many gardeners.

"It is always fun to see where it wants to be in your garden. You may have planted it in one garden the year before and have found it chose a new location the following year, maybe with the help of a winged friend. You can find a large array of Echinaceas from purpurea to newer varieties like 'Hot Papaya'. They are all striking and provide a food source for butterflies when they are in bloom and for birds when they have gone to seed."

  • In 1998, the Perennial Plant Association chose Echinacea purpurea "Magnus" as the perennial of the year.
  • Some varieties are fragrant
  • Echinaceas are considered deer resistant.
  • Echinacea makes a great cut flower for bouquets, lasting up to two weeks in a vase.
  • The spiky brown seedheads are also great for dried arrangements.
  • Echinacea is well known for it's medicinal benefits.  For a scientific look, go here.

We carry 16 different kinds of Echinacea at Kirby's: Echinacea purpurea; 'After Midnight'; 'Double Decker'; 'Fatal Attraction'; 'Fragrant Angel'; 'Green Envy'; 'Green Jewel'; 'Hot Papaya'; 'Magnus'; 'Pink Double Delight'; 'Ruby Giant'; 'Ruby Star';'Virgin', 'Big Sky', 'Sombrero Hot Pink', and 'Sunrise'. There is a color and a style for everyone!



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