Saturday, January 22, 2011


Dianthus gratianopolitanus 'Bath’s Pink’

Here’s another perennial I that’s an easy keeper in my garden – just two little bits of maintenance during the year. It’s been in my garden for ten years.

The slowly spreading ground cover grows 6 to 8 inches tall. The flowers hover above the foliage.  It blooms well in full sun, After bloom it is easy to deadhead with a hand grass edger or to grab a bunch of stems and snip them off with a hand pruner. I have never had it re-bloom.

The new growth lays on top of the ground and can be trimmed with a scissor to keep it the right size - just lift and cut. . .

It always seems to me to have a brief bloom time. The pictures from May 5 (in bloom) to May 29 (after trimming) prove it’s not much different from a lot of other perennials.

(May 5, 2010)

(May 29, 2010)

Dianthus is also called pinks. I remember my grandmother talking about the pinks in her garden. I thought the name came from the color of the flower.

It turns out that pinks are named for the flower’s saw-toothed edge. A piece of cloth is pinked to keep the fabric from unraveling. Sewers may be familiar with the zig-zag edge of a pinking shears.

 For me, it’s about as care free as a perennial gets. Neglect doesn’t seem to bother it.


donna said...

This is a plant that I've never grown. Sounds like it thrives on neglect and so perfect for me. I own a pinking shears, but swear that I didn't know it's purpose was to keep fabric from unraveling.


Marie said...

The original dianthus was planted with my granddaughter when she was 5 years old. So, it has a special place in my heart.

I have pinking shears too. I even use them once in a while - (to avoid sewing!)