General: Sunflower family (Asteraceae). Purple coneflower is a perennial herb 1.5-6 dm (0.5-2 ft) tall, with a woody taproot. The plant has one to several rough-hairy stems, mostly unbranched. Leaves are alternate, simple, and narrowly lance-shaped 5-30 cm (2-12 in) long, 1.5-4 cm (0.5-1.5 in) wide, with entire margins. Flowers look like lavender sunflowers with the heads 4-7.5 cm wide (1.5-3 in) wide, at the ends of long stalks. Flowers bloom from June to July. Ray flowers are 2-4 cm (0.75-1.5 in) long, spreading or drooping, light pink to pale purple. The disk flowers are 5-lobed, brownish-purple, and situated among stiff bracts. Pollen grains are yellow. Fruits are small, dark, 4-angled achenes.
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