Dianthus pixie ‘Cheddar Pink’
evergreen ground covering perennial
blooms mid spring
comes in quarts or in 1 gallon pots
blooms May to June
Dianthus – Carnation – Pink –
There are about 300 species of mostly evergreen, low growing, subshrubs, annuals and biennials, in this genus. They occur in Europe, and Asia with a single species in arctic North America, and few extending to South Africa. Most are plants for the rock garden or edges of garden beds. Much hybridizing has created several different groups of pinks and carnations bred for specific purposes. Border Carnations are annual or perennial plant up to 24″ tall used as the name suggests as well as for cut flowers. Perpetual-flowering Carnations are mainly grown in the open but may be grown under cover to produce unblemished blooms, these are often disbudded leaving only the top bud to develop. American Spray Carnation are treated like perpetuals except that no disbudding is carried out. Malmaison Carnations, now undergoing revival in popularity, are so-called because of their supposed resemblance to the Bourbon rose ‘Souvenir de la Malmaison’, highly perfumed, they are grown in the same way perpetuals but need more care. Other groups of hybrids for the garden and cutting are the Modern Pinks and the Old-fashioned Pinks. Finally comes the Alpine or Rock Pinks bred from alpine species and used mostly in rock gardens. In all hybrid groups there are some cultivars that are sel colored (all the same color), and other that are flecked, picotee, or laced, the latter 2 types having petals narrowly edged with a different color.
Ranging from fully to marginally frost hardy, Dianthus species like a sunny position, protection from strong winds, and well drained, slightly alkaline soil. Stake taller varieties. Prune after flowering.