from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. Any of several coneflowers of the genus Echinacea, having usually pinkish-purple ray flowers.
  • n. The roots, seeds, or other parts of such a plant, used in herbal medicine.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. Any of several plants, of genus Echinacea, having pinkish-purple flowers.
  • n. A herbal medicine extracted from the roots and seeds of such plants.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. A genus of coarse composite plants of the prairies of North America, allied to Rudbeckia, but with long rose-colored rays and prickly-pointed chaff.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. small genus of North American coarse perennial herbs


New Latin Echīnācea, genus name, from Latin echīnus, sea urchin (from its rough leaves); see echinus.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From scientific Latin Echinacea, from Ancient Greek ἐχῖνος ("hedgehog") (because of the soft "spines" in the centre of the flower) +‎ -acea. (Wiktionary)



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  • Nothing a little echidna tea wouldn't cure, I suspect.

    April 16, 2009

  • When I was first introduced to this, I comically confused it with echidna. I was very sick at the time.

    April 16, 2009