It is beauty itself! I prefer the British simple small bloom which they refer to as pinks. I remember watching the Chelsea Flower show one year and a grower talked about how Americans have turned them into big blousey flowers. It makes you smile to hear how he described what some carnations have become but I do love the delicateness of a small, old fashioned pink.
As I walk past my table, I get the fresh clover scent of these little gems. The color is vibrant and yet there is also something very modest about these little flowers. Perhaps it is because it is a flower that has fallen out of favor over time as the modern world wants more dramatic flowers such a the rose or lily. But no...give me this unsung little blossom in a simple bouquet that cannot help but cheer you as you enter a room.
Did you know that carnations we used by the Greeks in ceremonial wreaths and garlands? The name is derived from 'corno' which means floral garland.
Or that the latin name Dianthus caryophyllus is because the Athenians honored carnations by calling them Di-anthos meaning 'flowers of jove'?
Or that Mary shed tears at the plight of Jesus and carnations sprang up from where her tears fell?
Or they are referred to as gillyflowers due to their clover like scent along with wallflowers, sweet William, sweet rocket, valerian among others?
Or they were an essential part of the ornamental Tudor garden?
Are our carnations, and streak'd gilly-flowers"
~ William Shakespeare