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Dianthus plumarius

Please keep in mind that it is illegal to uproot a plant without the landowner's consent and care should be taken at all times not to damage wild plants. Wild plants should never be picked for pleasure and some plants are protected by law.
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Plant Profile

Flowering Months:
Caryophyllaceae (Pink)
Life Cycle:
Maximum Size:
30 centimetres tall
Gardens, grassland, meadows, roadsides, rocky places, walls, wasteland.

Variable in colour, 5 petals
The petals are toothed at their tips. Flowers can be red, white or pink (and sometimes bicoloured). Pollinated by insects. 10 stamens.
The fruit is a capsule containing the seeds.
A greyish-green perennial flower with narrow, elliptical leaves in opposite pairs.
Very fragrant.
Other Names:
Clove Pink, Common Pink, Cottage Pink, Feathered Pink, Garden Pink, Grass Pink, Indian Eye, Mary's Pink, Mother of all Pinks, Pheasant's Eye, Scotch Pink, Wild Pink, Wild Sweet William.
Frequency (UK):

Similar Species

Other Information


Dianthus plumarius, commonly known as Cottage Pink, Garden Pink, or Wild Sweet William, is a species of herbaceous perennial plant in the Caryophyllaceae family. It is native to Europe and Asia and can be found in habitats such as rocky slopes, grasslands and meadows. The plant has narrow, grass-like leaves and small, fragrant, pink, red, white or purple flowers that grow in clusters. It typically grows as a low-lying groundcover and is often used as an ornamental plant in rock gardens, wildflower gardens and as a meadow plant. It's not known to have any medicinal use, it's not recommended for any use.


Pink, also known as Dianthus plumarius, is a popular flowering plant that belongs to the Caryophyllaceae family. This species is native to Europe and Asia, and it is known for its attractive, frilly flowers that come in shades of pink, red, and white.

The name "Dianthus" comes from the Greek words "dios," meaning god, and "anthos," meaning flower. This name is fitting for this beautiful plant that has been revered for centuries for its delicate beauty and sweet fragrance.

One of the most distinctive features of pink is its petals, which have a ruffled appearance that gives the flower a soft, feminine look. The petals are arranged in a star shape around a central disk, and the flowers can be single or double.

Pink is a hardy plant that thrives in full sun or partial shade. It prefers well-drained soil and does not require much watering, making it an ideal choice for gardeners who want a low-maintenance plant that still delivers a big impact.

In addition to its aesthetic appeal, pink is also valued for its medicinal properties. The plant contains a compound called eugenol, which has antiseptic and anti-inflammatory properties. The essential oil extracted from the plant is used in aromatherapy to relieve stress and anxiety.

Pink is also a popular choice for cut flower arrangements, as the flowers have a long vase life and retain their fragrance and color even after being cut. They are often used in bouquets for weddings and other special occasions.

Pink is not only valued for its beauty and medicinal properties but also for its cultural significance. In the Victorian era, different flowers were associated with different meanings, and pink was known to symbolize love, gratitude, and appreciation. In fact, giving someone a pink flower was considered a way to express your admiration and affection towards them.

Pink has also been used in folklore and traditional medicine for centuries. In traditional Chinese medicine, the plant is used to treat various ailments such as digestive disorders, respiratory problems, and inflammation. In Europe, the plant was used in herbal remedies for coughs, colds, and other respiratory ailments.

As a perennial plant, pink blooms from late spring to early summer, and the flowers can last for several weeks. The plant can grow up to 12 inches tall and 18 inches wide, and it is often used as a border plant or in rock gardens. The flowers attract butterflies and bees, making it a great addition to any garden that supports pollinators.

In terms of care, pink is a low-maintenance plant that requires minimal attention. It can be propagated by division or from seed, and it can be grown in containers or in the ground. When grown in the ground, it is important to ensure that the soil is well-drained and that the plant is not overwatered, as this can lead to root rot.

There are several cultivars of pink, each with its own unique characteristics. For example, the 'Bath's Pink' cultivar has bright pink flowers with a spicy scent, while the 'Doris' cultivar has double flowers with a fringed edge and a delicate pink color.

Pink is also used in landscaping and urban gardening, as it is a hardy plant that can survive in a range of environments. It is often used in commercial landscaping to create colorful, low-maintenance displays that brighten up public spaces.

One of the benefits of pink is that it is resistant to many pests and diseases. However, it can be susceptible to root rot if overwatered, and it may attract slugs and snails. To prevent these issues, it is important to maintain good drainage and to monitor the plant for signs of damage or infestation.

Pink is also a popular plant for use in floral crafts and arrangements. Its long stems and sturdy flowers make it a great choice for creating bouquets, wreaths, and other decorative items. The flowers can also be dried and used in potpourri or sachets.

In addition to its ornamental and medicinal uses, pink has culinary applications as well. The flowers have a sweet, clove-like flavor and are sometimes used to flavor liqueurs and syrups. The petals can also be added to salads or used as a garnish for desserts.

Pink is also a popular choice for use in weddings and other special events. The delicate flowers are often used in bridal bouquets, boutonnieres, and centerpieces, adding a touch of romance and elegance to the occasion.

If you are interested in growing pink in your garden, there are a few things to keep in mind. As mentioned earlier, pink prefers well-drained soil and full sun or partial shade. It can be planted in the spring or fall, and should be watered sparingly to avoid overwatering. Deadheading the flowers can encourage more blooms and prolong the flowering period.

Overall, pink is a versatile and charming plant that has a wide range of uses and applications. Whether you are a gardener, a florist, or simply someone who appreciates the beauty and diversity of nature, pink is sure to delight and inspire you.

Distribution Map

Reproduced by kind permission of the BSBI.

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