Common Name Echinacea, Cone Flower 
Genus  Echinacea
Species E. purpurea hybrids 
Family Asteraceae
Life Cycle  Perennial 
Tray Size  32
Plug Care Harden off and plant out as soon as possible after arrival. Plants may arrive in a dormant state from Gro 'N Sell, so don't be alarmed if they arrive with little to no top growth. Any echinacea plugs received as actively growing plants need to be protected from the frost. When planting out be sure you to not bury the crowns. Plant the plugs so that the top of the growing medium is level with the soil.
Netting / Staking Not necessary 
Temperature Range Hardiness zones 4-9, some cultivars are a little more hardy than others, typically the purple or white single varieties with open centers have a little more vigor. They do need a cold winter for perennialization so warm zones might struggle with some of the more sensitive varieties. 
Spacing 16-24" depending on variety (Greater spacing for larger varieties)
Soil Preference Rich, well draining soil. It is important for Echinacea to receive wet and dry cycles for overall plant health so allow soil to dry slightly between irrigations. Fertilize regularly during active growth periods with a balanced fertilizer for best results. Echinacea are known to be rugged problem free plants but the newer cultivars will give you the biggest flowers and longest stems if they are well fed and watered. Neutral pH is best. 
Day Length Facultative long-day plants. It is possible to bulk up plants under short days (vegetative growth) and then force flowering by switching to long day conditions. Plant in full sun. 
Pinching Do not pinch. 
When to Plant Plants shipped in the fall require winter protection. Terra Nova recommends transplanting to a 4" pot from a plug, not a larger size container or the ground if you receive plugs in the fall. Grow with 50-55F nights and 55-65F days. Plugs received in the spring and into summer can get bumped up into larger pots or planted directly in the ground to establish over the season and will be strong enough to overwinter. When planting in the spring, wait for the last frost date and protect new growth from frost and freezing temperatures. 
Harvesting Harvest when the petals have expanded for fresh use. If you are harvesting for the cone only, wait until the cone is raised and turning golden, and remove petals upon harvest. Cones can be used fresh or dried. 
Post Harvest Care Expect a vase life of approximately a week, the use of a floral preservative will help maximize vase life. 
Diseases / Insects Thrips can be a problem as the plants begin to flower. Aphids, whiteflies and slugs will also target Echinacea.  Pythium and Phytophthora can be problems if the plants stay waterlogged for prolonged amounts of time. Plants should be allowed to dry moderately between waterings. Plants can be susceptible to botrytis if adequate spacing and airflow is not maintained. It is generally recommended to water in the morning to avoid sending the plants into their night cycle with water on the foliage to avoid crown rot and leaf spot. 
Bailey's Notes

Some Echinacea are grown from seed and some are vegetatively propagated using high-tech tissue culture techniques. We are only offering the fancy tissue culture types in our perennial program this year after overwhelming demand in 2023 and 2024. Because these plants are propagated via tissue culture you are receiving clones, or exact replicas of the stock plants. The newer cultivars may be a little more picky than their wild purple counterparts but are worth the TLC.  

Resources Growing Echinacea