Tomato Soup Coneflower

P1010082P1010019Coneflowers do not just come in purple anymore!   Pictured below is a new variety that we have this year called Tomato Soup!   The color is just like tomato soup.  If you have soup in the kitchen – you need “soup” in the garden!  The stems grow to 3′ in height and the flowers will go 5″ across.  It will bloom from mid-summer to frost.  Believe it or not – there is another new echinacea called “Mac n’ Cheese”.   We’re trying to get that on our orders for 2010!

The other varieties that we are very excited about this year one of the releases in the “Big Sky” series – and new to us is Harvest Moon which is a gorgeous yellow! 

In the vibrant purple shades are Fatal Attraction and Elton Knight.   A lighter orange/yellow color can be found in the variety called ‘Mango Meadowbrites’.

Coneflowers can be done in mass plantings which are stunning.  We have a perennial bed at home with Karl Foerster Feather Reed Grass in the center, and circling that is the basic purple coneflower.  The other outstanding feature of the coneflower family is the winter interest!  We do not cut ours down in the fall but rather leave it all winter.  The birds go after the seed heads of the plants and when covered with the hoar frost of early winter, are really beautiful.