I recently came across an article in a gardening magazine in which the author rails against the unsightly new echinacea hybrids. These poofy clowns would never find their way into her garden! Give her a good, old fashioned coneflower that the pollinators will recognize as a real flower. I’m not such a purist, myself. I have very much enjoyed adding some of the new hybrid echinaceas to the bed. Pictured above is one of them, Pink Double Delight.
That’s not to say that I spurn traditional coneflowers, not at all. They have a starring role in the midsummer garden. While many of the new echinaceas are smaller plants, standing about 2 feet tall, Magnus holds its flowers high, reaching about four feet.
And here is Ruby Star. It’s just a little shorter than Magnus, and its flowers have a slightly more intense colouring.
Primadonna is blooming in a partly shaded section of the garden. The muted flowers are set off beautifully by Geranium ‘Rozanne’.
Sundown is an unusual shade that I find really is suggestive of a sunset.
Here’s Echinacea Alba, with Sundown in the background.
Virgin is another nice white coneflower. It has large, unusually flat flower heads, with the petals held out stiffly rather than drooping in the traditional coneflower manner.
I still have space for some exotic doubles. Hot Papaya bloomed heavily last year, and put on an amazing show. It is just starting to bloom this year. It’s not quite so profuse this year, owing, no doubt, to the drought.
Meringue is situated in an area that has morning shade, where the greenish tint to the flower cones is well-displayed.
Finally, here are a couple of plants that were new to the garden last fall and are just putting out their first show of flowers. I’m really enjoying Secret Passion, above, and Milkshake, below, which are both set off nicely by lime green hosta leaves.