Shocking magenta-pink, upward-facing blooms which exude the scent of cloves appear in masses above silvery-blue mats of evergreen foliage. Each of the 5 petals have serrated edges, looking as if they have been trimmed with pinking shears, hence the common name 'Pinks'. If deadheaded, this species will flower heaviest in early summer and again in fall.
Dianthus grow best in loose, well-drained, neutral to slightly alkaline soils. Lime can be added to the soil if it is naturally acidic to raise the pH. Dianthus can be grown in full sun or part shade, but the foliage will not be as lush and fewer flowers will be produced if it is grown in hot, dry areas. Regular watering during prolonged dry spells will be necessary. However, they are tolerant of short periods of dryness. Do a thorough clean-up in the fall to prevent pest and disease problems, and add a layer of mulch to protect the evergreen foliage. As soon as the weather begins to warm up, remove all of this mulch to prevent crown rot. Dianthus can be propagated by division every few years in early spring, just as the new growth begins to appear. This is recommended because Dianthus tends to be a short-lived perennial otherwise. It is also easily raised from seed, but named varieties will not come true like the plain species will.
Bellflower-Carpathian (Campanula carpatica), Coral Bells (Heuchera ), Geranium-Hardy (Geranium ), Lamb's Ear (Stachys byzantina), Pincushion Flower (Scabiosa columbaria), Speedwell-Creeping (Veronica prostrata), Tickseed (Coreopsis grandiflora), Violet (Viola )
Fragrant flowers or foliage
Cut flower or foliage
Early summer/Early fall
Full sun to part shade
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