Coneflowers in the Tallgrass Prairie


Purple Coneflowers © 2014 Bo Mackison

“What we do see depends mainly on what we look for. … In the same field the farmer will notice the crop, the geologists the fossils, botanists the flowers, artists the colouring, sportmen the cover for the game. Though we may all look at the same things, it does not all follow that we should see them.” ~ John Lubbock

Purple coneflowers. One of my favorites. Since it will bloom from June through September, there are usually pockets of these purple beauties in the prairie during any summer visit. My favorite part is the spiny center, that red rusty cone.

The species is even named for its distinctive center – Echinacea means hedgehog in Greek. Evidently the center disk looked like a hedgehog to the plant naming folks way back when.


About Bo Mackison

I'm a photographer, book-artist, traveler, naturalist, and creator of the Contemplative Creatives Journey, An Online Workshop and Community and Desert Wisdom Cards and Workshops. Though often not well known, I find the desert a welcoming place - a healing space. Its mysteries and gifts transformed me several years ago. Since that first encounter, I return again and again to fill my well in what most people think of as a desolate region. I'd love to share my desert discoveries and wisdom with you. Please subscribe to receive my five part mini email course The Gifts of the Desert. It's my gift to you.


  1. Purple Coneflower – one of my all-time favorite perennials. I WILL plant some one day but they’ll never be as pretty as those, right there, in that prairie, in that photograph. Swoon.

  2. These are so beautiful, Bo. I love looking at the Purple Coneflowers through your eyes and lens. Your love for them shows. 🙂

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