Echinacea, also known as coneflower, is one of the most vibrant and beautiful flowers that bloom late in summer. With gentle white, pink, or dark-rose petals, coneflowers attract hundreds of butterflies in August, which makes them popular among cottage gardeners who like to liven up their backyards. These flowers have thick stems, huge daisy-like blossoms, and mounded heads. Echinacea is also known for its medicinal properties and can be used to treat a variety of skin conditions. Here is how you can grow Echinacea at home.
If you don’t have a garden to grow your gorgeous coneflowers in a proper flower bed – don’t despair! You can still grow Echinacea at home, but you will need a really nice container for the flower. Choose a big pot if you want to grow coneflowers at home as they need a lot of space. These flowers are drought tolerant, which means they will be okay in the fast-drying soil of the pot. But do remember to water them regularly!
Echinacea is incredibly adaptable, but there are a few things you need to do for it to grow effortlessly. Coneflowers love light, so make sure you put them in a place with lots of sunshine. Prepare rich soil for them and make sure you use some compost to boost their growth. These flowers can tolerate light, heat, and even light frost, but make sure you keep them properly hydrated.
Growing from seed
Echinacea is incredibly easy to grow and requires little to no work from you. You can simply grow it from seed and enjoy beautiful flowers the same year! It’s best to plant the seeds late in autumn as they require some time in the cold environment of winter to germinate in spring. This is called a stratification process and all you need to do is sow your seeds in the pot in autumn and put it outside for the winter. They will sprout when the time comes!
When you’re growing your coneflowers at home in containers it’s important you feed them with fertilizer to get beautiful healthy flowers. You should also use fertilizer if you want to have bigger blossoms. Cut off dried and withered flowers regularly to give space for new flowers to grow. You should also mulch the plants to keep the moisture and prevent those pesky weeds from ruining your pot. It will also make your containers look aesthetically pleasing!
Echinacea might be heat-resistant, but it does love water! There’s a quick test to figure out whether your plant needs watering – feel the top of the soil and if it feels dry then it’s time to water. Be careful as the soil may not look all that dry, but one touch is enough to figure it out. Remember not to water the plant directly, splashing liquid all over Echinacea’s leaves. Just add water at the base of the plant. It’s best to do your watering early in the morning.
Inspect Echinacea’s leaves regularly as you water the plant every day. Look if there is some insect damage from leaf miners or whiteflies. If you do notice little insect populations, you can simply wash them away with a stream of water. If your plant is being heavily damaged, you should use some insecticidal soap or a special Neem oil spray.
You can get fresh seeds from your Echinacea relatively easy – just beware of birds that like to dine on them! If you want to collect some seeds wait for the blooms to dry, collect them, and put them upside down to dry out completely. You will find the seeds in the heads of coneflowers. Lightly crush the dried out blossoms and pick out the seeds. Remember to wear gloves as there are spikes that can hurt your hands.