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Small plant, powerful perfume

Scent of Firewitch is outdone only by its versatility

Fragrance is one of the most sought-after characteristics in garden plants. It is true that not all flowers have a great fragrance and many new hybrids have no detectible scent. One lovely perennial, Dianthus ‘Firewitch,’ shown below, not only looks good but smells good, too.

perennial. It prefers to grow in full sun and in soil that is well-drained. Its low-growing habit makes it ideal for the perennial border or rock garden. It also will cascade nicely out of a large planter and makes a beautiful groundcover.

THE PLANT LOOKS LIKE A SOFT, GRAY CARPET, growing only 3 to 4 inches tall with evergreen, bluish-green foliage. It easily can spread 12 inches or more.

THOUGH FIREWITCH IS SMALL, IT HAS A BIG FRAGRANCE when it blooms. The small flowers rise above the foliage just 6 to 8 inches and the petals are a medium pink with a purplish cast. It will bloom profusely in spring and will rebloom sporadically from summer to early fall, especially if the spent flowers are removed after flowering.

THIS VERSATILE PERENNIAL CAN BE USED IN MANY WAYS and in all types of garden styles, from eclectic to contemporary. It also can be an interesting and environmentally friendly substitute for lawn grass on a small, sunny slope that you don’t want to mow.

Shelly Nold for the April 2015 issue

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