Echinacea purpurea 'Green Eyes'
Common Name: purple coneflower
Type: Herbaceous perennial
Family: Asteraceae
Zone: 3 to 8
Height: 2.00 to 3.00 feet
Spread: 1.00 to 1.50 feet
Bloom Time: June to August
Bloom Description: Magenta-pink rays with green to orange cone
Sun: Full sun to part shade
Water: Dry to medium
Maintenance: Low
Flower: Showy, Fragrant
Attracts: Birds, Butterflies
Tolerate: Deer, Drought, Clay Soil, Dry Soil, Shallow-Rocky Soil

Culture

Easily grown in average, dry to medium, well-drained soil in full sun to part shade. Best in full sun. An adaptable plant that is tolerant of drought, heat, humidity and poor soil. Divide clumps when they become overcrowded (about every 4 years). Plants usually rebloom without deadheading, however prompt removal of spent flowers improves general appearance. Freely self-seeds if at least some of the seed heads are left in place.

Noteworthy Characteristics

Echinacea purpurea, commonly called purple coneflower, is a coarse, rough-hairy, herbaceous perennial that is native to moist prairies, meadows and open woods of the central to southeastern United States (Ohio to Michigan to Iowa south to Louisiana and Georgia). It typically grows to 2-4' tall. Showy daisy-like purple coneflowers (to 5" diameter) bloom throughout summer atop stiff stems clad with coarse, ovate to broad-lanceolate, dark green leaves. Good fresh cut or dried flower. The dead flower stems will remain erect well into the winter, and if flower heads are not removed, the blackened cones may be visited by goldfinches or other birds that feed on the seeds.

Genus name of Echinacea comes from the Greek word echinos meaning hedgehog or sea-urchin in reference to the spiny center cone found on most flowers in the genus.

Specific epithet means purple.

‘Green Eyes’ is a magenta-pink coneflower that is best noted for having a distinctive lime green center cone on newly emerged flowers. This cultivar is the result of an open-pollinated cross between Echinacea 'Ruby Giant' (seed parent) and an unknown pollen parent. Flowers appear in a floriferous bloom from late spring to late summer, sometimes with additional sporadic bloom until frost. This cultivar typically grows in an upright clump to 2-3' tall and to 1-1.5' wide on sturdy, well-branched stems that do not need staking. Each flower (to 4-5" diameter) features overlapping, bright, magenta-pink rays that are perpendicular to the stem and surround the domed center cone which changes color from lime green to golden orange as the flower matures. Flowers are mildly fragrant. Strigose, narrow-ovate leaves (to 6” long) with serrate margins are medium green. U.S. Plant Patent PP17,172 was issued on October 24, 2006.

Problems

Japanese beetle and leaf spot are occasional problems. Susceptible to aster yellows disease.

Garden Uses

Excellent, long-blooming flower for massing in the border, meadow, native plant garden, naturalized area, wildflower garden or part shade area of woodland garden. Often massed with black-eyed Susans (rudbeckias).