Happy in the Heat

Dianthus photographed by Tucson photographer Martha Lochert

Dianthus barbatus, or “Sweet William” is part of a genus of 300 species, which includes carnations. Sweet Williams are short-lived perennials which were first noted in the English botanist John Gerald’s garden catalog in 1596, but Dianthus are native to southern Europe and parts of Asia.

I like growing Dianthus because they are pretty hardy through the summer heat of Arizona and are very prolific in their flower production, as long as one is vigilant about pinching off the spent flowers and keeping them watered.


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