Dianthus is the name of a family that has about 300 species of flowers that includes carnations, Garden Pinks, and Sweet Williams. They are one of the most fragrant flowers around. I have a bunch of them planted outside my front door, and as I walk outside, the smell is just heavenly.
The word, "Dianthus," comes from two Greek words: Dios (god), and anthos (flower). I think this is appropriate because not only are they fragrant, they are also beautiful. Most dianthus are perrenial. They bloom from spring to fall. They are characterized by their five frilly petals. Most are pink. Dianthus come in a variety of sizes. They can range anywhere from 2 inches in height to over three feet. Most are in the ten-twenty inch range.
Dianthus should be grown where they receive at least 4-5 hours of full sun each day. They prefer well-drained, slightly alkaline soil. If they are overwatered, their foilage will turn yellow. For this reason, it is best not to mulch around Dianthus. To keep them blooming through the summer, remove the spent flowers. Dianthus clumps tend to spread through the years, so if you want, you can divide them by digging up the clumps, separating them, and replanting them.