June's plant of the month

Dianthus carthusianorum

Dancing among the froth of grasses in the crescent border at the moment is a dark magenta flower that seems to be held aloft by magic. The flowers sway and bob amongst the grasses in even the gentlest breeze.Although it looks nothing like a carnation or an old-fashioned pink the delicate flower is on the same family – Dianthus.

It is a wild form, called Dianthus carthusianorum, that is a native of alpine meadows throughout Europe. The plant was brought to Britain from Grenoble by Carthusian monks who arrived in Britain during the twelfth century at the invitation of Henry II. Its popularity as a garden plant is on the increase after appearances at the Chelsea Flower Show in recent years.

Click on the image gallery for each month’s special plant, and return here next month to discover more about our plant of the month for July.