header image

Dianthus - A Garden Darling

Dianthus varieties

 

Dianthus, also known as Pinks, Carnations, and Sweet Williams, encompasses over 300 species and are native to Europe and Asia.  They prefer full sun (at least 6 hours), well-drained loamy soils, and weekly watering if needed.  They are herbaceous perennials with opposite leaves, grey green to blue-green foliage, flowers having 5 petals, and frilled petals.  Many of the perennial varieties are noted for a spicy clove-like fragrance.  

Picotee colored dianthus

There are 4 patterns of flower – solid, bi-color, picotee, and eyes.  They flower best in spring into early summer usually taking a break during the heat of summer and re-bloom in late summer into fall.  A light tipping can assist with the re-bloom.  Flower colors can be red, rose, lavender, white, coral, and yellow.   

Issues with Dianthus are usually a result of poor cultural practices.  Overwatering, poor soil drainage, heavy mulching, and shade can result in root rot, and infection with fungal and bacterial pathogens.  Many prefer not to mulch or to use stone as a mulch as it drains quickly. 

Dianthus varieties grow from a 4- inch mat to a 3- foot herbaceous perennial.  Depending on the variety they can be perennial, annual, or bi-annual.   

They are relatively easy to maintain, hardy from zones 3-9, and are wonderful as a garden border.  They can be divided, and seeds can be spread but, by deadheading, you increase your flowering ability. 

A nice addition to any garden and their fragrance make the Dianthus a wonderful garden addition. 

Sweet William flowers





Also in Lawn & Garden Blog

Winterberry
Ilex verticillata or Winterberry

Commonly known as Winterberry, this deciduous holly flowers along the stem and develops brightly colored red, orange, or salmon berries in the fall. Native to eastern North America and typically found in damp...

Continue Reading

basket of evergreens & berries
December in the Landscape

One of the harbingers of the winter holiday season is our native Ilex verticillata or Winterberry Holly.  Glossy red, scarlet, salmon or gold berries cover the stems of these shrubs during the winter months. 

Continue Reading

Dwarf Conifers
Dwarf Conifers

Dwarf conifers are an excellent landscape plant for smaller gardensMost conifers are evergreen, so they provide year-round interest in the landscapeThey give structure to the landscape

Continue Reading