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Should and can I divide this dianthus?

josine2302josine2302 The Netherlands, RotterdamPosts: 68
I planted this dianthus plumaris in the spring of 2017. It flowered profusely and looks healthy. But I read that dianthus is mostly a bi-annual, I wonder, should I divide it? Or prune it? Dividing seems difficult because there is basically just one stem. I would love your advice. 
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  • nutcutletnutcutlet PeterboroughPosts: 26,368
    There are many species of Dianthus, annual. biennial, perennial. That looks like a perennial. Many emerge from the ground with just one stem and they won't divide, cuttings work well. If there are multiple stems from the ground you should be able to divide it. One thing I have done successfully is spread it out and cover the trailing stems with gravel for it to root into. That gives more rooted stems.
  • josine2302josine2302 The Netherlands, RotterdamPosts: 68
    nutcutlet said:
    There are many species of Dianthus, annual. biennial, perennial. That looks like a perennial. Many emerge from the ground with just one stem and they won't divide, cuttings work well. If there are multiple stems from the ground you should be able to divide it. One thing I have done successfully is spread it out and cover the trailing stems with gravel for it to root into. That gives more rooted stems.
    You mean cover pieces of the plant still attached to the plant and then wait until they grow roots? And then cut them of and plant them elsewhere? Sorry if I sound stupid..

  • nutcutletnutcutlet PeterboroughPosts: 26,368
    You don't sound stupid, stupid is not asking :) Yes, that's what I did.
    I see it as a lazy way of doing cuttings, they look after themselves and you don't have to do anything. I'm not good at normal cuttings. I've only tried this on 2 plants of D. 'Mrs Sinkins' so not a guaranteed method
  • josine2302josine2302 The Netherlands, RotterdamPosts: 68
    nutcutlet said:
    You don't sound stupid, stupid is not asking :) Yes, that's what I did.
    I see it as a lazy way of doing cuttings, they look after themselves and you don't have to do anything. I'm not good at normal cuttings. I've only tried this on 2 plants of D. 'Mrs Sinkins' so not a guaranteed method
    Thank you very much for explaining. I am going to try this method. How long did it take for your stems to root?
  • nutcutletnutcutlet PeterboroughPosts: 26,368
    I did it earlier in the year than this and they were rooted by the next spring
  • I think @Fairygirl does this when hers go flat and bald in the middle. I remember making a note to try it. The temptation is to keep lifting them up to see if they've rooted. Don't!  :D
  • josine2302josine2302 The Netherlands, RotterdamPosts: 68
    I think @Fairygirl does this when hers go flat and bald in the middle. I remember making a note to try it. The temptation is to keep lifting them up to see if they've rooted. Don't!  :D
    Oo I’m not very good at resisting temptations.. But I will try this. 
  • FairygirlFairygirl west central ScotlandPosts: 46,098
    I think @Fairygirl does this when hers go flat and bald in the middle. I remember making a note to try it. The temptation is to keep lifting them up to see if they've rooted. Don't!  :D
    I do indeed  :)
    Wonder if it works with hair?   :D

    I just peg bits down with plastic covered wire [dianthus - not hair!]  Couldn't tell you how long it takes for them to root, but it helps to just keep bits of the plant in place, if nothing else, and it all knits together. If you do it early in the year when growth is really moving, that's probably best, but you could do it any time. 
    Otherwise, they are quite easy from cuttings most of the time. A few round the edge of a little pot of gritty compost so that they have good drainage.  I find that if you pull a bit away with a little bit attached [heel cutting ] they work very well.  :)
    It's a place where beautiful isn't enough of a word....


  • Thanks @Fairygirl. I'm glad I remembered that correctly.  :)
  • FairygirlFairygirl west central ScotlandPosts: 46,098
    Quite impressive ppauper. I doubt I would manage that!  ;)
    It's a place where beautiful isn't enough of a word....


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