Growing Double Mixture Sweet William Garden Seeds
- Taxonomy: Dianthus barbatus
- Seed Type: Perennial
- Sow Indoors or Outdoors: Choose sunny location and sow directly outdoors after last frost. For earliest blooms, start indoors 4 – 5 weeks prior. Germination will take about 14 days then transplant seedlings either indoors or outdoors once there are two sets of true leaves.
- Days to Maturity: 105 – 112 days
- Hardiness Zone: 4 – 8
- Planting Depth: 1/8”
- Plant Spacing: 8 – 12"
- Growth Habit: 18” tall shrub with 8” spread and stems with dense 3 – 5” clusters of flowers
- Soil Preference: Organic, nutrient-rich, well-drained
- Light Preference: Full sun – partial shade
- Diseases/Pests/Troubleshooting: Susceptible to crown rot and mold in poorly-drained soil. Sweet Williams thrive in full sun, but may require partial shade in extreme heat. Monitor regularly for snails and slugs.
- Color: Mix of pink, crimson, purple, scarlet, and cream
- Flavor: Sweet, fragrant hints of clove and nutmeg. Sweet William petals give a light, subtle compliment to fish preparations, jams, or wherever sweet, clove-like flavor is desired.
For earliest blooms, start Double Mix Sweet William seeds indoors 4 – 5 weeks before last frost. Sweet William Double Mix is easy to grow from seed and may also be sown directly just after last frost. Germination will take about 14 days then transplant Double Mix seedlings either indoors or outdoors once there are two sets of true leaves. For direct sowing, plant Sweet William Double Mix seeds 1/8” deep and 8 – 12” apart in organic, nutrient-rich, and well-drained soil in full sun. Although Double Mix Sweet Williams thrive in full sun, plants may require partial shade in extreme heat conditions. Sweet Williams are susceptible to crown rot and mold in poorly-drained soil and monitor regularly for snails and slugs. Routine deadheading of spent flowers will promote perennial growth and plant will readily reseed itself. Double Mix Sweet William seeds mature at 105 - 112 days as 18” tall shrubs with an 8” spread and stems of dense 3 – 5” clusters of double-flowered clusters of pink, crimson, purple, scarlet, and cream.
Dianthus barbatus is native to moderate climates of the Pyrenees mountains of southern Europe and stretching into Asia. The lifecycle of Dianthus barbatus can be difficult to classify because it grows as a perennial in optimal climates, a biennial in most climates, but most commonly sold and planted as annuals regardless of region. Princess Kate Middleton included Sweet Williams in her 2011 Royal Wedding bouquet as a tribute to her groom, Prince William Duke of Cambridge.