General: Sunflower Family (Asteraceae). Echinacea purpurea is a perennial herb 1.5-6 dm (0.5-2 ft) tall, with a woody rhizome or tough caudex. The plant has one to several rough-hairy stems, mostly unbranched. Basal and lower cauline leaf blades are ovate to ovate-lanceolate with serrate edges, up to 2 dm long and 1.5 dm wide, and slightly heart-shaped at the base. Cauline leaves are similar but become smaller as they extend up the stem. The flowers are in heads like sunflowers with the disk up to 3.5 cm across. The drooping ray florets have ligules 3-8 cm long, and are reddish-purple, lavender, or rarely pink. The disk florets are 4.5-5.5 mm long, and are situated among stiff bracts. Flowers bloom from June to August. Pollen grains are yellow. Fruits are small, dark, 4-angled achenes.
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