Echinacea purpurea. Perennial in zones 3-10.
North American native prairie wildflower with pretty purple daisy-like flowers that reach 3” across. Begins blooming in second year. Once common in the wild, but now mainly grown under cultivation with many varieties developed for ornamental purposes. This strain was sourced from a wild population and has been stewarded by Strictly Medicinal Seeds in Williams, Oregon, to maintain its wild character and therefore, reportedly more of the complex medicinal compounds. All parts of the plant are used as an immune-stimulant. Aka, Purple Coneflower.
Seeds require cold stratification to germinate. Sow shallowly outdoors in good potting soil October to March, or soak then refrigerate seeds in paper towel for 4 weeks prior to spring sowing. When plants are 3” tall, transplant outdoors to 12” centers. May bloom in first year if sown early. Deadhead to prolong bloom and limit self-seeding.
To save seed, do not harvest or deadhead flowers. Cut seed heads when dry, thresh by hand or by dancing. Screen to clean. Isolate from other Echinacea purpurea by 1/2 mile.