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Dianthus chinensis Telstar (photo courtesy of Thomas J. Story)
Dianthus chinensis Telstar (photo courtesy of Thomas J. Story)

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Zones A2, A3, 1-24, 30-45, H1
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Dianthus gratianopolitanus

Cheddar Pink


More than 300 species and an extremely large number of hybrids. Most kinds form attractive evergreen mats or tufts of grasslike green, gray-green, blue-green, or gray-blue leaves. Single, semidouble, or double flowers in white and shades of pink, rose, red, yellow, and orange; many have a rich, spicy fragrance. Main bloom period for most is spring into early summer; some kinds rebloom later in season or keep going into fall if faded flowers are removed. All kinds of dianthus thrive in light, fast-draining soil.

Dianthus gratianopolitanus

From Europe. Neat, ground-hugging, foot-wide mat of blue-gray foliage. Stems 6–10 in. high bear small, typically pink to rose, single blossoms (less than an inch across) that are very fragrant. Bloom season lasts from spring to fall if plants are deadheaded regularly. Effective as a groundcover or edging or in a rock garden.

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