Sweet William from the Super Duplex Bluepoint Mix

JMcCombie

Joined June 2012

  • Available
    Products
    44
  • Artist
    Notes

Apparel

Cases & Skins

Wall Art

Home Decor

Bags

Stationery

Artist's Description

Untouched color/colour photograph by J. McCombie.
No old English cottage garden could possibly be complete without its share of Sweet Williams, sweet-scented, beautiful in the border and perhaps one of the most attractive cut flowers. Easy to grow; once established and left to themselves, they will take over your garden!
Originally native to southern Europe, sweet william is a short-lived perennial which is commonly treated as an annual or biennial. Beloved for its bright clusters of lightly scented flowers borne in summer, this old fashioned favorite self-sows readily to form charming colonies, ensuring its long-lived presence in the garden. Much hybridization has occurred to broaden the range of flower and leaf colors of sweet william, as well as to intensify its fragrance.
This is a splendid strain of Sweet Williams developed specially for use in floristry but will, of course, be quite happy to display its charms in a flower bed. Expect a high percentage of lovely double blooms in a very wide colour range. 20 ins.
Dianthus barbatus (Sweet William) is a species of Dianthus native to southern Europe and parts of Asia which has become a popular ornamental garden plant. It is a herbaceous biennial or short-lived perennial plant growing to 30-75 cm tall, with flowers in a dense cluster of up to 30 at the top of the stems. Each flower is 2-3 cm diameter with five petals displaying serrated edges. Wild plants produce red flowers with a white base, but colours in cultivars range from white, pink, red, and purple or with variegated patterns. The exact origin of its English common name is unknown, but first appears in 1596 in botanist John Gerard’s garden catalog. The flowers are edible and may have medicinal properties. Sweet William attracts bees, birds, and butterflies.
Sweet William is a herb biennial or short-lived perennial plant native to the mountains of southern Europe from the Pyrenees east to the Carpathians and the Balkans, with a variety disjunct in northeastern China, Korea, and southeasternmost Russia. It grows to 30-75 cm tall, with green to glaucous blue-green tapered leaves 4-10 cm long and 1-2 cm broad. The flowers are produced in a dense cluster of up to 30 at the top of the stems and have a spicy, clove-like scent; each flower is 2-3 cm diameter with five petals with serrated edges; in wild plants the petals are red with a white base.
Many legends purport to explain how Sweet William acquired its English common name, but none is verified. “Sweet William” is often said to honour the 18th century Prince William, Duke of Cumberland. As a result of the Duke’s victory at the Battle of Culloden and his generally brutal treatment of the king’s enemies, it is also claimed that the Scots sometimes call the flower “Stinking Billy”. Though this makes a nice story, it is entirely untrue. The Scots sometimes refer to the noxious ragwort, not Dianthus barbatus, as “Stinking Billy” in memory of the infamous Duke. Also, the English botanist John Gerard referred to Dianthus barbatus as “Sweete Williams” in his garden catalogue of 1596, 150 years before Culloden.] Phillips speculated that the flower was named after Gerard’s contemporary, William Shakespeare. It is also said to be named after Saint William of York or after William the Conqueror. Another etymological derivation is that william is a corruption of the French oillet, meaning “little eye”. Sweet William is a favourite name for lovelorn young men in English folkloric ballads.

desktop tablet-landscape content-width tablet-portrait workstream-4-across phone-landscape phone-portrait
desktop tablet-landscape content-width tablet-portrait workstream-4-across phone-landscape phone-portrait

10% off

for joining the Redbubble mailing list

Receive exclusive deals and awesome artist news and content right to your inbox. Free for your convenience.