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Q. Who is Mr. Smarty Plants?

A: There are those who suspect Wildflower Center volunteers are the culpable and capable culprits. Yet, others think staff members play some, albeit small, role. You can torture us with your plant questions, but we will never reveal the Green Guru's secret identity.

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Monday - July 20, 2009

From: Monroe, LA
Region: Rocky Mountain
Topic: Herbs/Forbs, Wildflowers
Title: Is purple coneflower native to Colorado?
Answered by: Barbara Medford

QUESTION:

I have seen the purple cone flower growing wild in Gunnison National Forest in Colorado. Is it a native to that state or has it been brought in?

ANSWER:

According to our Native Plant Database, Echinacea purpurea (eastern purple coneflower) is not native to Colorado. It has probably escaped from cultivation, from someone's garden nearby, or possibly brought in by birds from as far away as Texas, where it is native. That is not nearly so worrisome as some exotic tropical plant being brought in and planted, because it "is so pretty."  Of course, a tropical plant probably wouldn't survive very long in that particular location.

 

From the Image Gallery


Eastern purple coneflower
Echinacea purpurea

Eastern purple coneflower
Echinacea purpurea

Eastern purple coneflower
Echinacea purpurea

Eastern purple coneflower
Echinacea purpurea

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