Echinacea 'Ruby Star' (Rubinstern) purple coneflower is not the reddest coneflower. Discover the many shades of red displayed by Echinacea purpurea plant cultivars.
Echinacea Rubinstern or 'Ruby Star' to the American ear, is an easy care American native with large, medium green foliage.This purple coneflower variety sends up 3-5 foot stems topped by 4 inch ray flowers with a shorter, more rounded central disk than most other coneflowers.
The burnt orange central disk is surrounded by a single row of flower petals which are a more intense shade of pink than those of most other purple coneflowers.
Some sellers are attempting to market it as a ruby red coneflower but it's actually hot pink. If you plant 'Ruby Star', it will likely be the brightest pink bloom in your coneflower garden.
A similar variety which is more reddish in hue is 'Vintage Wine', a plant which grows to 3 feet tall and differs markedly from 'Ruby Star' in that its petals form upward facing cups. This cultivar is hardy from zone 5a-9b.
Set plants a foot apart in well-draining, moist soil. The more moisture the soil holds, the taller the plants will grow. They can reach 5 feet once established in fertile soil.
They will tolerate poor soil and drought conditions, but will remain more compact. They will grow and bloom in shade, but full sun will give better results as far as flowering is concerned.
The bright blooms make good cut flowers and are attractive to butterflies and small birds.
Feed all Echinacea coneflower plants lightly in spring and summer with a slow release granular food. They can become disease prone if overfed.
This is a perennial coneflower in zones 4-8.
You could then add a few plants of the white 'Fragrant Angel' coneflower to cool down the sizzle. The dark cones of 'Green Wizard' Rudbeckia which is also called black coneflower would add drama to any coneflower garden.
As you can see from these pictures, the flowers of 'Solar Flare' are more red than those of 'Ruby Star'.
If you want more of a rust red, the double-flowered 'Hot Papaya' may be more to your liking. 'Tomato Soup' is a brilliant orange red while the drooping petals of 'Firebird' are more of an orange/rose blend.