Top Coneflower Selections

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Purple coneflower is one of the toughest, most reliable perennials on the market. Today, though, they come in more than just purple. Here are some of the best we grow in the Better Homes and Gardens Test Garden.

Fatal Attraction

Wow! This is one of the top performers here in our Test Garden. It's a strong, vigorous plant with a compact habit so it won't flop over or need extra support. And because the stems are strong, it makes a great cut flower. Our Test Garden manager especially loves the impact of the dark, almost black stems and concentrated purple color.

Name: Echinacea 'Fatal Attraction'

Size: To 26 inches tall

Color: Intense pink-purple

Zones: 3-9

Choose it Because: You want a shorter, boldly colored variety.

Fragrant Angel

The size of this plant makes it a winner: It has extra-large flowers, big bold cones in the middle, and extra sturdy stems. The shimmering white flowers and soft fragrance are wonderful bonuses!

Name: Echinacea 'Fragrant Angel'

Size: To 3 feet tall

Color: White

Zones: 3-9

Choose it Because: You want a fragrant white-flowering variety.

Summer Sky

The gorgeous, soft color of Summer Sky makes it a great plant to create delightful color combinations with. (Try mixing it with coleus 'Sedona', for example.) The wide petals also help to give the blooms good presence in the garden.

Name: Echinacea 'Katie Saul'

Size: To 3 feet tall

Color: Orange-pink blending to rose

Zones: 4-8

Choose it Because: You love the bicolored effect of the blooms.

Orange Meadowbrite

A groundbreaking variety, Orange Meadowbrite was one of the first orange coneflowers. It offers nice orange-rose color and the slender petals give it a fun starry appearance. Plant it in dense clumps for best effect.

Name: Echinacea 'Art's Pride'

Size: To 3 feet tall

Color: Orange-pink

Zones: 3-8

Choose it Because: You like the orangey color and the wildflower look it has.

Bravado

This tall coneflower has great presence in the garden. Its rosy blooms hold their color well and the dark stems offer a nice contrast. This one needs staking; we've noticed its stems are a little floppy.

Name: Echinacea 'Bravado'

Size: To 4 feet tall

Color: Rose-pink

Zones: 3-8

Choose it Because: You want a tall, non-fading purple-flowering variety.

Sundown

It's the color that makes this coneflower stand out, says our Test Garden manager. We love how easy it is to combine the warm orange flowers with other plants.

Name: Echinacea 'Evan Saul'

Size: To 40 inches tall

Color: Orange

Zones: 4-9

Choose it Because: You like the warm orange color of the blooms.

Harvest Moon

The warm gold flowers of this variety help it stand out in the garden, as do its bold, droopy petals. It's a solid performer for us that produces lots and lots of blooms.

Name: Echinacea 'Matthew Saul'

Size: To 30 inches tall

Color: Golden-orange

Zones: 4-9

Choose it Because: You like golden color.

Mango Meadowbrite

Both the color and the starry form of the flowers give this variety and edge. The mustard-yellow petals accent a yellow-orange cone. Plant it in dense clusters for the most drama. It's one of our favorites.

Name: Echinacea 'Mango Meadowbrite'

Size: To 30 inches tall

Color: Golden-orange

Zones: 5-8

Choose it Because: You like the bright yellow flowers and wildflower look it has.

Magnus

The old standby among coneflowers, this award-winning variety has beautifully colored blooms and bold central cones. It's a good reliable choice, even against the host of brand new varieties.

Name: Echinacea 'Magnus'

Size: To 30 inches tall

Color: Rosy purple

Zones: 3-8

Choose it Because: You want a time-tested pink-flowering variety.

Razzmatazz

This variety is downright fun. Razzmatazz offers a great pink color and an usual form: A fluffy mophead of petals tops the cone. It's a good solid performer in the garden, but does benefit from staking.

Name: Echinacea 'Razzmatazz'

Size: To 30 inches tall

Color: Rosy purple

Zones: 3-9

Choose it Because: You want something totally different.

Primadonna White

With a name like Primadonna, we expected a little bigger plant. This great variety not only has a compact habit, but the nice, bright-white flowers absolutely shine in evening gardens. The orange-green cones are great, too, but we really love the fact that this plant doesn't flop.

Name: Echinacea 'Primadonna White'

Size: To 3 feet tall

Color: White

Zones: 4-9

Choose it Because: You want a compact white-flowering variety.

Ruby Star

Ruby Star is a star in the Test Garden. This rugged variety offers large daisy-shape flowers with big, beautiful cones. It's one of the strongest growers we have. Its sturdy stems make it a great cut flower, too.

Name: Echinacea 'Rubinstern'

Size: To 3 feet tall

Color: Rose-purple

Zones: 3-8

Choose it Because: You want a good pink-flowering variety to grow as a cut flower.

Sunrise

This is a good grower that's producing lots of flowers in the Test Garden. The flowers are a pleasing creamy vanilla shade and feature prominent cones.

Name: Echinacea 'Sunrise'

Size: To 3 feet tall

Color: Vanilla

Zones: 3-8

Choose it Because: You like the soft creamy bloom color.

Bright Star

This is another exceptional variety near the top of our list of favorites. It has a lot of great qualities: rich color, beautiful cones, large daisy-shape blooms, and a mild fragrance.

Name: Echinacea 'Bright Star'

Size: To 3 feet tall

Color: Purplish-pink

Zones: 3-8

Choose it Because: You like the fragrance and the rich purple color.

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