Dianthus armeria (Deptford Pink)

Scientific Name

Dianthus armeria L.

Common Names

Deptford Pink, Grass Pink


Dianthus armeria subsp. armeria, Caryophyllus armerius, Cylichnanthus maculatus, Dianthus carolinianus, Dianthus epirotus, Dianthus hirsutus, Dianthus hirtus, Dianthus hybridus, Dianthus pseudocorymbosus, Dianthus villosus, Dianthus vivariensis, Silene vaga

Scientific Classification

Family: Caryophyllaceae
Subfamily: Caryophylloideae
Tribe: Caryophylleae
Genus: Dianthus


Color: Bright reddish-pink
Bloom Time: Summer


Dianthus armeria is a herbaceous annual or biennial plant that grows up to 2 feet (60 cm) tall. Leaves are hairy, dark green, slender, and up to 2 inches (5 cm) long. Flowers are with five petals, bright reddish-pink, up to 0.6 inches (1.5 cm) in diameter, and appear in small clusters at the top of the stems from early to late summer.

Dianthus armeria (Deptford Pink)
Photo via cod.edu


It is grown as an annual plant, so it has no USDA hardiness zone.

How to Grow and Care

Plant pinks in full sun, partial shade, or anywhere they will receive at least 6 hours of sun. The plants need fertile, well-drained soil that is alkaline.

Wait until the danger of frost has passed when planting Dianthus and place them at the same level they were growing in the pots, with 12 to 18 inches (30 to 45) between the plants. Do not mulch around them. Water them only at the base of the plant to keep the foliage dry and prevent mildew spotting.

Instructions on how to care for Dianthus are very straightforward. Water the plants when dry and apply fertilizer every six to eight weeks. You may also work a slow-release fertilizer into the soil at planting, which will release you from the need to feed the plants.

Some Dianthus varieties are self-sowing, so deadheading is extremely important to reduce volunteer plants and encourage additional blooming. Perennial varieties are short-lived and should be propagated by division, tip cuttings, or even layering. See more at How to Grow and Care for Dianthus.


Native to most of Europe, from Portugal north to southern Scotland and southern Finland, and east to Ukraine and the Caucasus.


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