Many plants have guided me in my career, often working closely with certain genus like the coneflower. I get the opportunity to journey with the plants and experience them in varying situations. I often spend my free time delving a little deeper and researching some interesting facts about a plants rise to notoriety.
Echinacea genus of ridged flowering perennials that prefer free draining soil and full sun were one of those middle of the border rather harsh to touch perennials that came by way of a soft introduction.
Tough and reliable the coneflowers that I recall from my teenage years were able to withstand, extreme fluctuations of sub zero temperatures and hot baking Summers that were my experience of UK Summers in the late 80’s.
Typically associated with prairie style plantings and bold groups of purple eye popping daisy flowers self sown seedlings of purpurea the first of garden introduction to the cone flower.
Today coneflowers are available in a kaleidoscope of citrus tones, vibrant pinks, rustic reds and orange that plant breeders introduced during the early 2000’s. Whilst the colorful introduction of sultry sounding varieties has appealed to a captive plant buying audience, the performance sadly left disappointed with the longevity of said cultivars.
Purity of White Swan the unspoken grace of white in a garden befallen with silvered blades of grasses as they turn rustic shades of auburn for me will always be much more a garden worthy perennial than the tropical oasis of flaming orange coneflowers, although it’s all down to personal preference and budget.
Attracting pollinators to the brightly colored florets who stubble over the spiky florets of the cone flower, translated from Greek meaning hedgehog. The seeds deeply encased in the tight prickly cones often self sowing adding variable shades to the parent plant over the seasons.
Coneflower ‘White Swan’ in bold groups make the perfect canvas for fall asters and arching stems of Russian sage amidst sparks of flowering grasses that rustle in the fall breeze.
Today my are colorful dwarf growing varieties, planted as seasonal annuals in large container arrangements and window boxes. Aside Pennisetum setaceum ‘Rubrum’ (Red fountain grass) and Rudbeckia ‘Susan’ the addition of the long flowering coneflower makes it the perfect fall trio.
My passion for plants is unwavering, I have a particular interest in natives but as of late home is the urban metropolis that is America’s first garden city Philadelphia.
Follow my colorful journey of City-scaping as we beautify the concrete with soft and graceful trees, plants and flowers.