For Your Garden - September 2010
Native wildflowers abundantly adorn the landscape with their colorful blossoms! Are you using native wildflowers in your garden? Native species are adapted to the Illinois climate. They require little or no watering and are resistant to drought, insects and most diseases. They also provide food and shelter for native wildlife. Because they are perennials, you can welcome their presence year after year.
purple coneflower (Echinacea purpurea)
Photo © Illinois Department of Natural Resources.
Purple coneflower is a species of prairies, open woods and wooded floodplains in Illinois. It blooms from July through September. The purple ray flowers surround the cluster of disk flowers. Each flower head forms on its own stalk. Its leaves are large, widest at the base, and arranged alternately along the stem. The leaves feel rough and are toothed along the edge. This plant may grow to a height of five feet.
Classification and taxonomy are based on Mohlenbrock, Robert H. 2014. Vascular flora of Illinois: A field guide. Fourth edition. Southern Illinois University Press, Carbondale. 536 pp.