How to grow and care for coneflowers
Coneflowers are a weedy flowing plant that belongs to the family Asteraceae, the common name for most Echinacea species is ‘purple coneflowers’. Echinacea purpurea was the original coneflower that was discovered by European explorers in the forest of the southeastern US in the 17 century and in 1699 was sent to England.
The purple coneflower was believed to be popular in European gardens as an ornamental plant as well as a medical herb. This perennial plant is native to eastern and central North America.
What makes the coneflower a gardener’s favorite is its ability to withstand the heat as well as drought, attracts pollinators and birds, ease of growth, and blooms for months, and can also be used as cut flowers. The coneflower is a must and will go to work for you. For more on how to grow and care for coneflower let’s take a closer look.
The planting location
The planting location should receive 6-8 hours of sunlight, in warmer regions zones 8 and higher with a bit of afternoon shade which will also benefit coneflowers by keeping the blooms from fading.
The soil type
Coneflowers can survive in a variety of soils that include sandy, rocky, and clay with a ph of about 6.5-7.0. Coneflowers don’t like soils that are waterlogged or mucky.
Medium moist to dry is best for coneflowers, allowing the soil to dry between watering however is ideal.
A granular slow-release fertilizer (12-6-6) in early spring will give good results. Before applying fertilizer read and follow the manufactures directions for the best results.
Garden insect pests
Keep a watch for these insect pests and treat them as followed.
- Aphids- These garden pests suck nutrients from plants, the use of insecticidal soap or a strong spray of water from a garden hose will bring control.
- Eriophyid mites- Lives on the inside of the flower where they feed, damage includes distorted flowers and stunted growth. The use of insecticidal soap will bring control.
- Sweet potato whiteflies- lives on the underside of the leaves where they suck the plant’s juice. Yellowing of the leaves and sooty mold is also another sign of these pests. The use of insecticidal soap will eliminate them.
- Japanese beetles- Cause destruction by feeding on the plant’s leaves, these beetles appear within the month of June. Beetles can be handpicked and thrown in a bucket of soapy water.
Diseases of coneflower are as followed.
- Aster yellow- This is encouraged by poor growing conditions or insect pests. Plants that are infected have stunted growth, while the flowers become distorted and turn a green color. Remove plants that show these signs and properly dispose of them.
- Stem rot- occurs because of overwatering, remember coneflowers don’t like wet feet so proper water management is important. Remember to allow the soil to dry out between watering.
- Powdery Mildew- Is caused by poor air circulation and excessive moisture, controlling moisture along with the proper spacing of plants will give good results.
Deadheading will keep your coneflowers growing nice with a healthy appearance causing coneflower to produce more flower bloom. Flowers that are faded can be removed with a hand pruner.
When deadheading what you want is to remove the old flowers and their stems. Follow the dead flower head down to the stem, the cut should be made one-quarter to one-half inch above a lower branch junction where other flower stems arise.
Where to install
- Coneflowers can be planted in masses in garden beds.
- Plant coneflowers around the trunk of trees.
- Use them as a backdrop in garden beds.
- Try them as a foundation planting.
- Install coneflowers along a garden path walkway.
- Plant coneflowers alongside a fence.
- Plant coneflowers alongside a wall.
The final word on the care of coneflowers
The coneflower is amazing and will go to work for you, this low-maintenance plant is a delight as it colors your garden while attracting pollinators and wildlife. What better way to have your garden buzzing with excitement and teaming with wildlife. Give the coneflower a try and bring great change into your garden and landscapes.
About the author
Norman loves being in the garden, both at home and for his job....
he is 'Natures Little helper' being outdoors, growing his vegetables and flowers from an early age.
Now having spent over 22 years in the profession he want to give some of his knowledge to others...
his vast array of hints and tips you will find scattered over this site will help you no end growing plants in your garden.
8 thoughts on “Coneflowers Care”
Coneflowers are quite common in Kansas and grow easily here. I do appreciate learning to dead head them after the bloom has died. Coneflowers provide an abundance of color in my garden and have enjoyed these flowers all my life. One of the best things about Coneflowers is that they grow easily in almost all soil types that include sandy and clay but also need a good drained spot not one that is mucky.
These flowers are amazing, thanks for stopping by and for sharing.
As a child, I used to have a garden at home where coneflowers were among the ones I liked the most. Nowadays, living in a flat it’s more difficult to manage to get plants alive… and I really miss a garden to take care of. I find it very relaxing and therapeutical. It sure helps people taking over the hustle and bustle of cities.
I loved reading your post! It’s very clear and enlightening on the topic. Thanks for sharing and keep safe!
Hello, I am so happy to help and it is good to bring back those childhood memories that are so wonderful. Working in the garden will relieve stress. All the best to you.
Call me crazy but I love wildflowers that look like daisies and I can see why these purple beauties are intentionally planted in gardens! The fact that these are hardy and don’t require a lot of sun makes them the perfect garden guest. It’s unfortunate that I live on the 4-5 grow zone marker so they won’t work for me (insert sad face here)
So sorry to hear that but I am so happy to help, hopefully, you can find something that can grow in your zone. All the best you.
Great article are coneflowers, they’re one of my favorite perennials. I got introduced to them on a hike with a friend. However, here is California according to Wikipedia, coneflowers’ official name is Rudbeckia California. The California coneflower is a large, beautiful perennial that grows in valleys or meadows, usually at an altitude between 400-7800, feet. We find them mostly in the Sierra mountains, and Northern California coastal mountain ranges. There are some people who do grow them in Southern California, there is a club in Orange County that is very active in promoting coneflowers in Southern California, but for the most part, Northern California is the epicenter for coneflowers.
One of the big attractions to growing coneflowers for me is they attract so many butterflies to my garden. It’s important to plant the flowers where they get between 6-8 hours of sunlight. And here in Southern California, that’s not an issue. Through the summer and fall, the blooms and seeds also attract several birds and other winged creatures including honeybees and hummingbirds, which I love to watch. Thanks for your tips on growing and protecting the coneflowers, it was very helpful. I look forward to reading more of your reviews and advice.
These plants are simply amazing and so beautiful, I am so happy to help. Thanks so much for your kind words and for sharing.