Dianthus


This family of low growing perennials, annuals and biennials
includes old fashioned carnations, sweet williams, cottage or
cheddar pinks and modern dianthus hybrids.

They are excellent additions to the Carolina garden.
Many varieties feature a lovely, spicy fragrance and make nice vase cuttings. The shorter forms work very well as a front border or edge planting, especially when massed in a group.

No cottage garden should be without a few dianthus plants. Most dianthus feature pink, lavender, purple, red or white
flowers. Newer hybrids may also show yellow and orange flowers. Some are bicolored, especially the modern hybrids. Did you know that the sewing scissors known as “pinking shears” got their name from the serrated edge flower forms of dianthus?

Perennial dianthus generally features grassy, silvery light green foliage that can offer a nice color contrast to the garden. Most are clump forming and should be divided every few years to maintain vigor, flowering and increase spread. They prefer well drained soil in a sunny spot but are generally not very fussy.

Shearing spent blooms in late spring can encourage more rebloom later in the season. Annual and biannual dianthus can be sown from seed or planted in spring. Some will reseed readily (like sweet william) while others will not. Some of these types feature darker green, grass like foliage and will also rebloom better with shearing or pinching of spent blooms. Some are strictly spring blooming only.

Season of Bloom
Summer
Height
12-16 inches wide x 12-18 inches tall
Hardiness USDA
Hardiness Zone 3-9
Flower Color
pink, lavender, white, red, purple, bicolor, serrated petal edges with silver-green to dark green grass like foliage.
Soil
prefers well drained soil but tolerates a wide variety of soil conditions except boggy, will benefit from annual fertilization with general purpose supplement, drought tolerant once established.
Exposure
Full sun or partial shade
Propagation
division of clumps.