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How to Grow Perpetual Carnations

Updated April 17, 2017

The earliest settlers from England and France brought with them to America a much-loved flower known as the carnation. A member of the dianthus family, perpetual carnations are the workhorses of the floral world. They create everything from long-lasting wedding boutonnières to funeral sprays. As their name implies, perpetual carnations produce flowers year-round as long as they are maintained in an appropriate environment. The most common way to grow perpetual carnations is inside a greenhouse.

Plant in a multipurpose potting compost.

Place plants in a sunny location, where they can receive both heat and light.

Stake plants with plant supports as they grow.

Water two to three times a week to maintain moist, but not wet, soil.

Pinch off the growing tip of plants when they exceed about 6 inches to make plants bush out into shoots. Each shoot will produce a flower. Pinch off subsequent shoots at alternating times to stagger flowers.

Feed a balanced flower food such as Miracle Gro Bloom Booster according to package directions.

Remove all developing buds except those on the stem ends.

Maintain a temperature of at least 7.22 degrees Celsius in flowers' environment.

In winter months, expose carnations to additional light from a 100 watt bulb placed about 5 feet above plants.

Things You'll Need

  • Potting soil
  • Pots
  • Plant supports
  • Light bulbs
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About the Author

A journalist since 1985, Susan Walworth has written for both weekly and daily newspapers, including "The Eufaula Tribune" and "The Dothan Eagle." She has won numerous state press association awards for photography, news and feature writing. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in journalism from Auburn University.