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Dianthus “Firewitch”

dianthus-firewitch-2Behnke Nurseries’ Perennial Department features Dianthus “Firewitch”. (Officially and properly Dianthus gratianopolitanus ‘Feuerhexe’, we are using the translation “Firewitch” to sound more user-friendly.) This was the 2006 Perennial Plant Association Perennial of the Year, and a terrific writeup may be found at: PerennialPlant.org

The Perennial Plant Association is a trade association of growers, retailers, writers, landscaper and interested gardeners, dedicated to promoting the use of perennials. To be designated a Perennial of the Year, the selection must be able to be grown over a large geographical area.

In our area, the “pinks” can be a challenge due to our clay soils. A raised bed, rock garden, planting on a slight slope–anything that improves drainage will make you more successful with overwintering this beautiful plant.

Electric pink flowers in May, and blue, grass-like foliage are it’s claims to fame. Low growing, place it in the front or the garden, or a container, so it is easily viewed.

Larry Hurley, perennials specialist for Behnke Nurseries (now retired), started with Behnke’s in1984. Larry enjoys travel, food and photography. He and his wife Carolyn have visited Australia, New Zealand, Thailand, Brazil, South Korea and much of Europe. Their home is on a shady lot where a lot of perennials have met their Maker over the years.

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