Dianthus roughly translates to “flower of love.” 

And once you set eyes on a bouquet of Dianthus flowers, you’ll easily be able to see where the name came from.

The Dianthus flower is durable yet delicate and is one of the oldest cultivated flowers known, dating back to Roman and Greek times.

Its ruffled petals, spicy, clove scent, and its long blooming period gives this flower its appeal and uniqueness.

Dianthus flowers are also called “pinks” or “Sweet Williamand they belong to a family of plants that includes carnations. 

Package of 2,000 Seeds, Sweet William Mixture (Dianthus barbatus) Open...

These pleasant flowers can be used as perennial, biennial, or annuals, and are commonly used in potted displays.

If you’re looking to keep your Dianthus plant indoors this season, it’s important to familiarize yourself with the care and unique attributes of this plant.

In this article, we’ll outline everything you need to know in order to keep your dianthus flower blooming beautifully in your humble abode, for as long as possible.

Basic Information On Dianthus Flowers 

If you’ve never owned a dianthus plant before, a bit of basic information may help you choose where in your home you’ll want to place it.

Here are some facts we’ve gathered to help you get started:

  • Dianthus plants usually grow between 6-18 inches tall and come in salmon, pink, red and white hues
  • Its foliage is sparsely spread on thick stems and it blooms from May until October.
  • Dianthus plants produce fragrant, tufted blooms that easily catch eyes and noses from passersby.
  • These plants need at least 6 hours of sun everyday.

While there’s lots more to learn about this classic flower, it’s good to have a basic idea of what you’re dealing with before getting your hands dirty – literally.

How To Sow A Dianthus Plant

If you’re looking to sow your dianthus plant before putting it indoors, we have a few directions for you before getting started. 

Dianthus Gratianopolitanus, Cheddar Pinks, (3 Plants)

Dianthus can be grown from seed if it’s sown early indoors and transplanted either outside or in a pot indoors after frost.

It can also be sown directly in the garden during summertime or grown from a pot.

Sowing Dianthus Seeds Indoors

Park Seed Sweetness Dianthus Seeds

If you’re looking to sow your seed indoors, follow these set of rules:

  • Only slightly cover the seed with a seed-starting formula.
  • Sow indoors 8 weeks before the last spring frost (if planning on planting it outside afterwards).
  • Soil must be kept at a moist 60-70 degrees F.
  • Wait 14-21 days for seedlings to sprout up from the soil.
  • Once the seedlings sprout up, provide the soil with lots of light near a window or underneath a fluorescent light (3-4 inches below). As the plants grow, raise the light to make it taller. Do not leave the light on for 24 hours. These seedlings need a dark period as well.
  • Not much fertilizer is needed. At 3-4 weeks old, feed it to them using a starter solution, following the directions on the package.

If you plan on planting the seedlings in the garden afterwards, they need to be “hardened off.” Help the plant get used to the outdoors by moving them outside for a week in a sheltered area. Protect your seedlings from any harsh winds or hot sun.

Basic Planting Instructions

If you purchased the dianthus plant in a pot and didn’t grow it from seed, it’s likely already in a quality soil and required more than simple grooming and watering for some time.

If you’re planning on potting a flowering dianthus to bring indoors, begin with commercial, high quality potting soil.

This type of soil is typically more lightweight than topsoil and is also pest-free and sterile. Many come with a light starter fertilizer mixed into the bag.

Next, find a container with a decent drainage hole. If you fall in love with a specific pot that doesn’t have drainage holes, you can drill some holes at the bottom yourself.

Fill the container up with potting soil, about 5 cm or 2” from the planter’s rim.

Next, make a small hole in the soil, slightly bigger than the size of the root ball. You can do this by hand or by using a trowel.

Then, insert the dianthus plant into the hole and press down around the plant firmly, packing the soil so that the root ball is just covered.

Once all your plants have been potted, you can water them well in order to help the soil settle and to give your new plants a boost.

For best results, place your plant in a bright location.

With dianthus plants, you can repot it every 2 years in the same or different container that’s a bit larger than the diameter of the plant roots.

How To Water Indoor Dianthus Plants 

Most potted flowers and plants enjoy being in consistently moist yet well-drained soil environments. 

If you see your plant wilting, it means your soil is too dry, and chances are slim that your plant will recover.

Make sure to continually check the soil moisture by using your finger – aim for at least once a day.

If the top 2-4 inches of soil is dry, it’s time to water your plants.

If possible, apply the water at soil level in order to avoid wetting the plant itself.

Make sure to water all of the soil area until you see water running out at the base of the container. This means your soils is wet all the way through.

How To Fertilize Your Dianthus Plant 

There are a lot of plant fertilizers on the market, and sometimes it can be a bit overwhelming –  especially if you’re a new gardener.

Typically, you’ll find fertilizer in these forms:

  • Slow-release
  • Granulated
  • Organic
  • Liquid feeds
  • Synthetic

The trick is determining which application method is the most appropriate for your specific plant situation, then select a product and brand that contains a specific nutritional balance creates especially for foliage plants.

This is extremely important for the life and well-being of your plant.

Over-fertilizing can lead to pant damage, so make sure you follow the manufacturer directions to figure out how much and when to feed your dianthus plants.

If you’re looking for a fertilizer for your indoor, potted dianthus plant, a high-quality slow-release fertilizer is a care-free and safe choice.

Pruning Instructions For Your Dianthus Plant

Alright, so you have your plant potted and watered, your fertilizer ready, and the perfect sunny location to help you little dianthus plant flourish.

Once it starts blossoming, you must begin to remove any fading flowers.

This not only helps the plant look tidier, but it can encourage more blooms to take its place.

Make sure to trim the foliage in order to maintain its shape and encourage the plant to produce more side-shoots, which then produces more flowers.

This also reduces the need for the plant to create a larger and more ruthless root system.

While this may not be an issue outdoors, reducing any root spreading will be helpful when dealing with certain sized pots indoors.

Common Pest Problems With The Dianthus Plant

Even though your precious dianthus is safe and sound indoors, with a healthy watering routine and 24/7 surveillance thanks to your house cat, these plant can still develop some pest problems.

By knowing your enemies, you’ll be able to handle them a lot better.

Here are a few common pest issues the Dianthus plant experiences:



These are green, black, peach or red colored insects that can spread disease while they mulch on the outer part of the dianthus leaves. They leave behind a sticky film on the foliage that then attracts ants.

Cabbage Looper

Cabbage Looper

These are green worms with white stripes on either sides of their body. They’re about an inch and a half long. To get rid of these worms, hand pick them off. For more ideas on how to rid your home of these pests, check out this article.

Cyclamen Mite

Cyclamen Mite

These mites comes out in hot weather and damage the plant by sucking juice out of its stems and leaves. Flowers will look distorted and blotchy if cyclamen get at them and the only way to see these critters is through a magnifying glass.

Make sure to keep plants watered in hot, dry weather, and get rid of any plants that are severely infected.

Spider Mites

Spider Mites

These spider-like mites are as big as a pepper grain and may come in the color of black, red, yellow or brown.

They tend to suck on plant juices while inserting toxins into the plant which creates white dots on the foliage.

You’ll often see a web on the plant and your dianthus will start turning yellow and dry. Try a spray down and a hot pepper wax to keep these critters at bay.

Dianthus For Indoors: Final Thoughts

Whether you’re a gardening pro or a green thumb-newbie, learning more about your new plant is always beneficial.

There’s so many plants in the gardening world today – all of which are unique in their own way.

With all this special character comes special care.

And with the right information, guides and support, you’ll be sure to have a lush garden, indoor and out, in no time.

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