low to very low
yellow to red
July and August
18 to 24 in.
12 to 18 in.
USDA zones 4-9
hardy to 7,500 ft.
Prairie coneflower is a native, drought-tolerant wildflower of the Great Plains. The leaves grow as a mound of finely cut, medium green-gray foliage.
From late June through August, it produces bright yellow to red flowers on upright flower stalks. The flowers have an extended center and drooping petals, resembling a sombrero.
This short-lived plant reseeds readily. Since it normally grows in open patches in grasslands and mountain foothills, it is a great choice for mixing with native grasses or a naturalistic landscape. The seed is used by some birds.
Prairie coneflower is growing at the Xeriscape Demonstration Garden in both a traditional flower bed and as part of a wildflower/native grass mixture. The bright yellow to red flowers are very beautiful. This is a tough, water-wise plant worthy of consideration.
Cut dormant plants to the ground in early spring before new growth starts. These are fairly short-lived plants and new seed may have to be planted for continuous growth. Leave seedheads through fall and early winter to feed native birds.