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Silene Species, Catchfly, Red Campion, English Maiden

Silene dioica

Family: Caryophyllaceae (kar-ree-oh-fil-AY-see-ee) (Info)
Genus: Silene (sy-LEE-nee) (Info)
Species: dioica (dy-oh-EE-kuh) (Info)
Synonym:Agrostemma sylvestris
Synonym:Lychnis dioica
Synonym:Lychnis rubra
Synonym:Lychnis sylvestris
Synonym:Melandrium dioicum



Foliage Color:

Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Characteristics:

Unknown - Tell us

Water Requirements:

Average Water Needs; Water regularly; do not overwater

Requires consistently moist soil; do not let dry out between waterings

Where to Grow:

Unknown - Tell us


18-24 in. (45-60 cm)

24-36 in. (60-90 cm)


15-18 in. (38-45 cm)


USDA Zone 5a: to -28.8 C (-20 F)

USDA Zone 5b: to -26.1 C (-15 F)

USDA Zone 6a: to -23.3 C (-10 F)

USDA Zone 6b: to -20.5 C (-5 F)

USDA Zone 7a: to -17.7 C (0 F)

USDA Zone 7b: to -14.9 C (5 F)

USDA Zone 8a: to -12.2 C (10 F)

USDA Zone 8b: to -9.4 C (15 F)

USDA Zone 9a: to -6.6 C (20 F)

USDA Zone 9b: to -3.8 C (25 F)

Sun Exposure:

Full Sun

Sun to Partial Shade



Bloom Color:


Bloom Time:

Mid Spring

Late Spring/Early Summer

Mid Summer

Late Summer/Early Fall

Mid Fall



Other details:

May be a noxious weed or invasive

Soil pH requirements:

6.1 to 6.5 (mildly acidic)

6.6 to 7.5 (neutral)

7.6 to 7.8 (mildly alkaline)

Patent Information:


Propagation Methods:

By dividing the rootball

From seed; direct sow outdoors in fall

From seed; winter sow in vented containers, coldframe or unheated greenhouse

From seed; sow indoors before last frost

From seed; direct sow after last frost

Seed Collecting:

Allow pods to dry on plant; break open to collect seeds


This plant has been said to grow in the following regions:

Seward, Alaska

Oakland, California

Richmond, California

Plainfield, Illinois

Mathiston, Mississippi

East Port Orchard, Washington

Vashon, Washington

Verona, Wisconsin

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Gardeners' Notes:


On Apr 19, 2005, kms4me2 from Lindstrom, MN wrote:

I love the color of the flowers of this plant, a clear true "candy" pink, hard to describe but really lovely. It grew taller than I expected, 2 1/2 feet in bloom, which lasted about a month.

The reason I post neutral is that it self-sows, as do many silenes, to the point of invasiveness. I did my best to dead-head plants (not easy on silenes), and yet I have seedlings everywhere the first spring after flowering.


On Aug 31, 2002, Baa wrote:

A perennial from Europe.

Has ovate to lance shaped, light to deep green, usually downy (but sometimes hairless) leaves. Bears small, pink flowers, each petal has a conspicuous notch in the middle. They are dioecious (individual plants being either entirely male or entirely female) and to produce viable seed you will need to grow more than one.

Flowers anywhere and repeatedly between March and November depending on the regional climate.

Love moist but well drained, neutral to slightly alkaline soil in light shade but will tolerate some sun where the soil doesn't dry out completely.