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Dianthus Diadoble Series: New from Hayloft Plants - Graham Rice

We see a great many new pinks every year but they're all pretty much the versions of the same old familiar type. Nothing wrong with that, as they become better scented and more prolific and long flowering. But sometimes, we just look for something a little different. So step forward the Dianthus Diadoble Series.

I was very taken with their more relaxed and informal style of flowers; they're in between the tight doubles of so many pinks, and the old single-flowered types. And it turns out these are unusual hybrids between Chinese pinks, Dianthus chinensis, and the traditional Sweet William, Dianthus barbatus. If you think about it, you can see hints of both species. All have bold colours, 'Diadoble Crimson Picotee' (above centre) is especially eye-catching, and all are well-scented with the scent being especially strong warm sunny days. 

Reaching 10-12in/25-35cm in height, with a spread of 6-8in/15-20cm, these Diadoble dianthus are neat enough to grow in containers with other summer flowers, or to site at the front of a sunny border in any reasonable soil. But the stems are also long enough to cut for small bouquets and the more you cut them – or deadhead them – the longer they'll flower.

Three colours are available this spring, all have prettily toothed semi-double flowers: 'Diadoble White' is pure white; 'Diadoble Purple' is a very vivid shade of purple with a red flash at the base of each petal; 'Diadoble Crimson Picotee' is bright red with a white edge. Lovely.


Editor-in-Chief of the RHS Encyclopedia of Perennials; writer for a wide range of newspapers and magazines including The Garden and The Plantsman; member of the RHS Herbaceous Plant Committee and Floral Trials Committee; author of many books on plants and gardens.

Source: RHS My Garden - Dianthus Diadoble Series: New from Hayloft Plants - Graham Rice