Location: Aquarium plaza
Closely related to E. purpurea (a common garden plant widely available); this species was the first plant from Tennessee to qualify as federally endangered. Found nowhere else in the world except the Central Basin of the state, it’s rarity may be explained by the inability of its seeds to reach open cedar glades nearby. Tennessee Coneflower is a perennial herb that reaches 24-36” tall. Basal leaves are narrow, parallel-veined, and rough feeling. The flowers bloom May-October, attracting pollinators such as bees and butterflies, as well as birds in the fall that eat the seed.