Guide to Carnations
Carnations have been cultivated for over 2000 years in Europe and Asia. The name comes from Greek, from the word “coronation” which refers to the special garlands worn by the Greeks in numerous ceremonial events. Carnations are also called “flowers of Gods” and “flowers of love”. The Carnation was chosen as an official flower by the state of Ohio. In the arts, Leonardo da Vinci made the religious symbol of the flower immortal by drawing it in his painting “The Madonna with the Carnation” presenting the Virgin Mary who is weeping.
Anna Marie Jarvis was the woman who started the commemoration of Mother’s Day. She chose carnations to pay tribute to her own mother, and so these flowers remained the symbol of this day all over the world. Carnation flowers are also edible plants. Their petals are used for the liqueur Chartreuse, as well as for flavour in salads and for decorating cakes.
How to plant carnations
Most important advice is that carnations love the sun and they need 6 hours of sunlight a day. So plant carnations where there is a lot of sun. Make sure to plant the bulbs in between 1 or up to 12 inches apart minimum. Provide special drainage, so they do not stay too wet since their roots might rot.
When to plant them
You should plant carnations in Spring or early Summer so the weather is hot enough, the soil is workable.
Provide natural minerals and keep the PH up to 6.5 for your flowers and carnations.
You should keep the soil slightly moist and always let your carnations have at least 6 hours of sunlight until they grow.
Fertilize once or twice a month and water once a week.
How to grow carnations
As mentioned, please water once a week and keep their soil at 6.5 PH. Please, trim all unnecessary growths or new branches you would not wish to grow.
Except fertilization every once a month, you should keep an eye for pests or diseases:
Are the most common carnation pests you can encounter.
What do carnations symbolize and mean
Carnations have their own color and every one of them has their own meaning.
Colors are mainly implied into the symbolism and the meaning of carnations.
White carnations are a real symbol of both purity and good luck.
Light red carnations are perfect to show someone your admirations. Dark red carnations are, of course, the meaning and symbol of love and affection.
Pink carnations are a great symbol of simply gratitude and that is all. Learn more about the meaning of pink flowers;
To learn more about each flower and it's meaning visit our floriography article!
How to prune carnations
Carnations can bloom twice a season, but at the end of Summer they will most likely die out and this is the time to deadhead them and let them grow for at least two weeks more. When you see that their leaves have fallen down and the main stem starts to fade, cut the carnation to the ground. This might happen some days or weeks prior to winter coming.
When you see that a new branch is coming out, you might want to cut it out. Pruning has to happen when the carnations signalise that it needs it.
If you have a bouquet of carnations at home, cut the stem 1 inch each week and prune all leaves that are under the water level. Keep the bouquet in up to 4 hours of sunlight and at night in a colder room.
What other names are carnations know for
Carnations are a well known flower around the world chosen for many occasions or planted in your home garden. It loves the sun and is growing quite fast.
People are thinking a lot of the time for other types of names for carnations and we have come around to find some:
Gillyflower or pink
If you wish to know what other way to call carnation flowers these are their official names that can be used next time.
Carnations legends and meaning
This flower’s legend says that it sprung from the tears of Mary which dropped on earth, while she was watching Jesus being carried to the cross.
Even today carnations are popular in plenty of ceremonies and special occasions.
These beautiful flowers have various meanings and rich symbolism – the pink one, for example, represents a mother’s true love for the child and this type of carnation is a symbolic flower for Mother’s Day.
Carnations are native to India, Japan and southern Europe, and it is believed that where there are carnations, there is also divinity. Carnations symbolize pure love and holiness and they are favoured for both weddings and funerals.
Where to buy carnations and how to choose them
Choosing carnations for your flower garden, you should know that you have three ways to plant them: as borders, in flower beds or rock gardens. Carnations seem relatively easy to plant and grow, but consider these factors:
- Carnations love the sun. Give them enough sunlight exposure every day and you can expect great results.
- Don’t water them too much if the climate is mild. However, during the hottest days of summer, water them once or twice a week. Don’t splash the flowers with water, but try to spray them.
- The perfect soil for carnation flowers is alkaline, fertile and well-drained. If you choose and prepare the soil properly, the grown flowers will be beautiful and you will have great production.
- If you want to grow tall carnations, they will eventually require some support to keep their stems up. Use wooden sticks to keep them straight up.
- Carnations grow to medium tall flowers, so for a really pretty and neat garden, plant them as borders or edging.
- Carnation flowers bloom throughout spring and summer and they even survive mild frost in the colder months.
- You can plant the seeds in a pot indoors and then move it to the garden, or plant them directly outdoors.
- Carnations are popular flowers for weddings, funerals, Mother’s Day and other occasions. They are used for bouquets, decorations, floral arrangements, in corsages and boutonnieres. Their blooms last a long time, so if you manage to grow beautiful carnations in your garden, you might as well sell them or create arrangements for sale.
- You can plant carnations in various colours: white, red, yellow, pink and orange.
- There are more than 300 existing species of Carnations and lots of hybrids, but the most popular ones are easy to grow and are among the most popular and sought after by customers' flowers today.
Flower delivery offers a lot of different carnations bouquets for every occasion possible. Visiting our website you can take a look at all the colors of carnations in combination with other flowers and gifts. Take a look at our carnation bouquets and add chocolates or candles to them.
Flower delivery offers same day or next day flower delivery if your order comes in by 2 PM. We work exclusively in London and the area, but do deliver in the UK, North Ireland and Scotland.