Dianthus barbatus nigrescens This lovely English form of Sweet William has stunning burgundy foliage adorned with deep shiraz colored flowers held in tight clusters each with white anthers. The have a light sweet fragrance and appear in late spring and summer. Cut back after flowering. Heat, dry and frost hardy. Enjoys full sun and well drained soil. Likes an annual dressing of lime. A favorite in our garden. 40cm x 20cm.
Dianthus barbatus nigrescens seed can be started early indoors. Sow onto good quality seed raising mix in pots or modules, cover seed with vermiculite. Water well and place in an unheated poly house. Germination should take 14-21 days at 12-15°C. Plant out in spring when large enough to handle.
Sow seeds very thinly into finely prepared soil, with stones removed, that has been raked to a fine tilth. Sow 6mm deep into drills spaced 30cm apart. Cover with a fine sprinkling of soil. Water well and keep damp until germination, 14-21 days at 12-15°C. Thin to 15cm when large enough to handle. Replant thinnings elsewhere.