ECHINACEA, NARROW-LEAVED (ECHINACEA ANGUSTIFOLIA)

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ECHINACEA, NARROW-LEAVED (ECHINACEA ANGUSTIFOLIA)

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This North American native is highly regarded in herbalism for its anti-bacterial, immune-stimulating, and lymph-moving effects.  Echinacea entered the western herbal materia medica by way of First Nation indigenous knowledge and has a history of use including serious and venomous bites (dog, snake, spider, insect bites and stings), blood-poisoning, and infections.  When used in high doses at the first sign of a cold or flu it can often stop it in its tracks, and it will lessen the severity and duration of symptoms if it has already set in as well.  The flowers and roots are both medicinally active and often combined when using for medicine.  All species of echinacea are endangered in the wild, both due to habitat-loss and also over-harvest, so growing this plant truly is an act of medicinal plant conservation.  They make beautiful cut flowers, are showy in the garden, attract butterflies, and provide winter forage for some species of birds, who relish the seeds.  Echinacea angustifolia prefers rich, alkaline soil (amend with lime) and full-sun to part shade.  Will not do well in excessively dry sites.  The most cold-hardy species of echinacea.  Plant 6 inches to 1 ft apart.  Hardy perennial to Zone 3.

 

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