Purple Coneflower – Echinacea purpurea

Purple Coneflower – Echinacea purpurea
Family Rosaceae – Rose Family; Fruit Trees
Wild purple coneflower plants photographed at Winfield Illinois.
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Honeybee on Echinaea
Honeybees love echinacea

The genus name is from the Greek echino, meaning "hedgehog," an allusion to the spiny, multicolored central disk. The flowers of Echinacea species are used to make an extremely popular herbal tea, purported to help strengthen the immune system; an extract is also available in tablet or liquid form in pharmacies and health food stores. There are  no reliable scientific studies showing any immune system benefit from imbibing echinacea tea or supplements.

Often cultivated, Purple Coneflower is a showy, easily grown garden plant. Native Americans used echinacea for many medicinal purposes. In Europe today, more than 200 pharmaceutical products are made from the extracts. Butterflies, honey, bumble and all sorts of  bees sip nectar from purple coneflowers all summer long.

Purple Coneflower

Echinacea wildflower

Common  Flowers
A flower is the reproductive structure found in flowering plants (plants of the division Magnoliophyta, also called angiosperms). The flower contains the plant's reproductive organs, and its function is to produce seeds. After fertilization, portions of the flower develop into a fruit containing the seeds. 
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