- Position: full sun
- Soil: well-drained, neutral to alkaline soil
- Rate of growth: average
- Flowering period: June to September
- Hardiness: fully hardy
Popular evergreen perennials that are grown primarily for their decorative flowers, which are produced in abundance over a prolonged period throughout summer. Their flowers appear in a wide range of colours and many (including those included in this collection) have a clove-like scent. The make valuable additions to mixed or herbaceous borders and the flowers are extremely long lived when cut and added to fresh arrangements. Plant them in a sunny spot with well drained, preferably chalky soil and dead-head frequently to prolong the flowering season even further.
Each collection contains 1 of each of the following varieties, all supplied as plug plants.
- Dianthus 'Cranmere Pool' Ideal for pots and containers as well as filling gaps towards the front of the border, these neat, bushy plants put on a marvellous display over a long period. They also look wonderful when added to posies. Grows to 35cm.
- Dianthus 'Devon Wizard' (PBR) Grey-green foliage forms a spreading mound, which is topped with magenta-pink double flowers. Their heady scented and vibrant colouring makes them invaluable additions to the border. Grows to 25cm.
- Dianthus 'Moulin Rouge' Crimson-flecked, sugar pink petals with an irregularly toothed margin, form exquisite flowers with a strong scent. They appear on stout stems above the clumps of grey-green foliage. Grows to 30cm tall.
- Dianthus 'Doris'A popular modern pink with clove-scented, double, pale pink flowers with red centres from early summer through to autumn. The fine, silvery green foliage makes a lovely frame for the masses of flowers. Grows to 40cm.
- Dianthus 'Gran's Favourite'One of the most popular varieties of pink, with flowers that look like raspberry ripple ice cream. The white petals have a contrasting deep purple-red edge with a similarly coloured splotch at their base. Grows to 50cm.
Supplied as plug plants
- Garden care: Incorporate lots of well-rotted manure or garden compost into the planting hole. Apply a balanced fertiliser in spring and deadhead to prolong flowering.
- Try taking cuttings in July and early August. Fill a small seed tray with coarse horticultural sand and water it well. Take the cuttings in the cool of the day, choosing non-flowering side shoots about two inches (5cm) in length. If there are flower buds, pick them off. Trim the cuttings below a node (where the leaf joint is) and remove or reduce any large leaves to lessen transpiration. Plunge them into the sand so that two-thirds of the cutting is submerged and place the tray in a cool, shady position for several weeks. Then pot up individually into compost, such as John Innes no 1. You can also leave your cuttings in situ until next spring, although they will need protection from frost.
Buy the collection of 5 Dianthus plug plants (1 of each variety) for £14.99 or buy 2 collections for £29.98 and get another collection FREE