Echinacea purpurea

Purple Coneflower

$3.00 - $30.00

1 oz.
1 lb.

3 Pack
Tray of 50
Out of Stock
Tray of 38
Out of Stock

A prairie classic! Purple Coneflower (Echinacea purpurea) has a fibrous root system with short woody rhizomes. It is a drought-tolerant perennial that is also deer resistant. Purple Coneflower can be found as far east as Georgia. Plains Indians used the root to treat rattlesnake bites, bee stings, headaches, toothaches, sore throats, and distemper in horses. Coneflowers are still widely used today in pharmaceutical preparations.

The flowers are a golden red to purple and may release a slight fragrance in strong sunlight. They are much-loved by bees. Blooms appear June-September and some Purple Coneflowers may re-bloom in the fall, especially if dead-headed early on. Echinacea purpurea matures to 4' in height. The preference is full or partial sun, and moist to medium conditions. Growth is best in fertile loam, but the soil can contain some gravel or clay.  Common names are Narrow-leaved Purple Coneflower, Sampson Root, Red Sunflower, and simply, Echinacea.

Live Plant Shipping Table

Spring Fall Age/Size
Potted 3-Packs May/June August/September 2.5" wide x 3.5" deep pots
Potted Trays of 38* May/June N/A 2" wide x 5" deep plugs
Potted Trays of 50 May August 2" wide x 5" deep plugs
*This species is a choice in the Mix & Match - Create Your Own Tray!

Echinacea purpurea - Purple Coneflower

Map Key

Present in state
Present but introduced in county
Present and native in county; not rare
Not present in state
Present and native in county; rare
Species extirpated (historic)
State or county listed as noxious
Present in state; exotic

This map shows the native and introduced (adventive) range of this species. Given appropriate habitat and climate, native plants can be grown outside their range.

5 Questions asked on Echinacea purpurea

What is the yellow flower the purple coneflower is pictured with in the photos?
The first photo you see of Purple Coneflower with Monarch, the yellow blossom belongs to Early Sunflower. If you click on any photo on a product page to enlarge it, you will see we try to name all relevant species or process as a caption below the photo.
Is it too late to get them stratified and sown yet this season. Or am I better to wait and just sow them in fall?
Hi Theresa. If you look at the germination code for Purple Coneflower in our catalog , on our website or on the seed packet, you will see that its code is A, meaning that no pre-treatment is necessary. You can plant those seeds in the spring and they will grow under normal conditions on an appropriate site.
Will they bloom the first year from planting seeds?
Hi Laura. We never want to guarantee a bloom on perennial plants the first year, even from transplants, but Purple Coneflower is an easy-to-grow perennial native that could possibly bloom the first year from seed, if all the conditions are right. If not the first year, you have a very good chance of getting blooms in year 2.
How many square feet will a 1 ounce envelope cover? Thanks.
Hi Lea,

Well, we don’t have an easy answer to that question.

Our expertise is with diverse prairie seedings and with many species of native flowers and grasses, 100 seeds/sq ft is considered a good seeding rate.

With just one species, it stands to reason that you wouldn’t need as many seeds per square foot as a diverse prairie planting because there won’t be as much competition between species. I’d say you’re shooting for somewhere between 30-50 seeds per square foot. The more seed you put down, the lower the risk of poor establishment but the higher the cost. The less you put down, the higher the risk of poor establishment but the lower the cost. Of course, you really only need about 1 mature plant per square foot but you can anticipate some seeds not germinating and some seedlings dying of various causes.

Sorry I don’t have a more straight-forward answer, but I hope this helps you make an informed decision.

Should I cut back my echinacea in the fall (early or late) or spring? I know they provide seeds for birds.
Hi Liz. Cutting plants back in the fall is dependent on your aesthetic preferences. Leaving the top growth over the winter months provides forage and cover for pollinators. But if you do not enjoy that look, feel free to trim them back. I personally love seeing the snow piled on the Coneflower seedheads.


Growing your own plants from seed is the most economical way to add natives to your home. Before you get started, one of the most important things to know about the seeds of wild plants is that many have built-in dormancy mechanisms that prevent the seed from germinating. In nature, this prevents a population of plants from germinating all at once, before killing frosts, or in times of drought. To propagate native plants, a gardener must break this dormancy before seed will grow.

Each species is different, so be sure to check the GERMINATION CODE listed on the website, in the catalog, or on your seed packet. Then, follow the GERMINATION INSTRUCTIONS prior to planting. Some species don't need any pre-treatment to germinate, but some species have dormancy mechanisms that must be broken before the seed will germinate. Some dormancy can be broken in a few minutes, but some species take months or even years.

Seed dormancy can be broken artificially by prolonged refrigeration of damp seed in the process of cold/moist STRATIFICATION. A less complicated approach is to let nature handle the stratifying through a dormant seeding, sowing seeds on the surface of a weed-free site in late fall or winter. Tucked safely beneath the snow, seeds will be conditioned by weathering to make germination possible in subsequent growing seasons.

To learn more, read our BLOG: How to Germinate Native Seeds

Dormant Bare Root Plants

We dig plants when they are dormant from our outdoor beds and ship them April-May and October. Some species go dormant in the summer and we can ship them July/August. We are among the few still employing this production method, which is labor intensive but plant-friendly. They arrive to you dormant, with little to no top-growth (bare-root), packed in peat moss. They should be planted as soon as possible. Unlike greenhouse-grown plants, bare-root plants can be planted during cold weather or anytime the soil is not frozen. A root photo is included with each species to illustrate the optimal depth and orientation. Planting instructions/care are also included with each order.

Download: Installing Your Bare-Root Plants

Potted Plants

3-packs and trays of 32, 38, or 50 plants leave our Midwest greenhouses based on species readiness (being well-rooted for transit) and order date; Spring shipping is typically early May through June, and Fall shipping is mid-August through September. Potted 3-packs and trays of 38 plugs are started from seed in the winter so are typically 3-4 months old when they ship. Trays of 32/50 plugs are usually overwintered so are 1 year old. Plant tray cells are approximately 2” wide x 5” deep in the trays of 38 and 50, and 2.5" wide x 3.5" deep in the 3-packs and trays of 32; ideal for deep-rooted natives. Full-color tags and planting & care instructions are included with each order.

Download: Planting and Care of Potted Plants

*PLEASE NOTE: we are a mail order nursery and have no retail facilities, but you may pick up your order if prior arrangements are made. Pick up orders are subject to **MN Sales Tax.

US Shipping & Handling Charges

SEED $100.00 and under: $5.00
Retail SEED orders over $100.00 ship free!

Custom seed mixes or discounted seed sales over $100, add 5% of the total seed cost
(for orders over $1,000 a package signature may be required)

BARE ROOT and POTTED PLANTS $50.00 and under: $9.00
over $50.00: 18% of the total plant cost. (For orders over $1,000 a package signature may be required.)

TOOLS and BOOKS have the shipping fee included in the cost of the product (within the contiguous US).

**We are required to collect state sales tax in certain states. Your state's eligibility and % will be calculated at checkout. MN State Sales Tax of 7.375% is applied for orders picked up at our MN location. Shipping & handling charges are also subject to the sales tax.

Shipping Season

SEED, TOOLS and BOOKS are sent year-round. Most orders ship within 1-3 business days.

BARE ROOT PLANTS are shipped during optimal transplanting time: Spring (April-May) and Fall (Oct). Some ephemeral species are also available for summer shipping. Since our plants are field-grown, Nature sets the schedule each year as to when our season will begin and end. We fill all orders, on a first-come, first-serve basis, to the best of our ability depending on weather conditions beyond our control.

POTTED PLANTS (Trays of 32/38/50 plugs and 3-packs) typically begin shipping early May and go into June; shipping time is heavily dependent on all the species in your order being well-rooted. If winter-spring greenhouse growing conditions are favorable and all species are well-rooted at once, then we ship by order date (first come, first serve). We are a Midwest greenhouse, and due to the challenges of getting all the species in the Mix & Match and Pre-Designed Garden Kits transit-ready at the same time, we typically can't ship before early May. Earlier shipment requests will be considered on a case-by-case basis.

*We are unable to ship PLANTS (bare root or potted) outside the contiguous US or to CALIFORNIA due to regulations.


We ship using USPS, UPS and Spee Dee. UPS and Spee Dee are often used for expediting plant orders; they will not deliver to Post Office Box numbers, so please also include your street address if ordering plants. We send tracking numbers to your email address so please include it when you order.



Germination Code
Life Cycle
Sun Exposure
Full, Partial
Soil Moisture
Medium-Wet, Medium, Medium-Dry
4 feet
Bloom Time
July, August, September
Bloom Color
Pollinator Favorite: butterflies, moths, bees, wasps, beetles
Bird Favorite: seeds, insects, fruit, nectar, nesting, perch
Deer Resistant
Highly recommended for home landscaping
USDA Zones
Plant Spacing
Catalog Code