SOLVED: Sweet William or Phlox???

Can someone please identify this for me? Thanks!

Thumbnail by vic
Helsinki, Finland(Zone 4b)

Sweet William and Phlox are the same thing ....(!) :)

Georgetown, TX(Zone 8a)

It looks like phlox, but I don't know which one. Sublata?

Helsinki, Finland(Zone 4b)

No, no subulata, subulata is the creeping one, that could be some D. barbatus variety or an annual Phlox.

This message was edited Saturday, May 18th 4:20 PM

Georgetown, TX(Zone 8a)

In this area, people usually mean the plant descended from Dianthus barbatus when they say Sweet William. Phlox belongs to the family Polmoniaceae, whereas Dianthus belongs to the family Caryophyllaceae.

Helsinki, Finland(Zone 4b)

Now we see again the importance of scientific names.. :P :)

Georgetown, TX(Zone 8a)

Common names also serve a purpose, if only that they feel good and are fun, but they are actually useful. Even though we have two different plant families here, neither of us has seen this plant, and we don't know its habits. It could indeed be creeping or erect, but without more information, we won't know by a post. So if a common name happens to describe this trait in a manner more understandable in the language of the locale involved, it has justified its use. Taxonomists continually change classifications, but my grandmother and her friends and their descendants still use the same name through the years. And we all know what is meant when we use those familiar terms in our areas. Yes, botanical names are good from a scientific point of view, but they, too, have limitations when you look at their practical place in the ordinary gardener's life. So, using your advanced knowledge of plant classification, which plant does Vic have, Polemoniaceae or Caryophyllaceae?

Helsinki, Finland(Zone 4b)

No voi perse ku tää menee aina tähän

Yes I know what you mean but you know - think how easy place world is for english speakers. I mean as a 'mother tongue'. Common names are then much more easier for you to use, would it be nice if I'd use just Finnish names from now?

So, I think the plant in the photo belongs to neilikkakasvit, because sinilatvakasvit look different.

(Vakavalla asialla ei saa leikkiä)


I'm not entirely convinced this is a Phlox as yet. Do the petals have a fringe at the edges? Is the plant heavily scented? and The buds, do they come from a sort of pin cushion like head?


Westbrook, ME(Zone 5a)

It looks like Dianthus barbatus (Sweet Willam) to me ;o)

Helsinki, Finland(Zone 4b)

Somebody hit me with a rock..

Chariton, IA(Zone 5b)

I agree with Poppysue and Aimee. Mine aren't blooming yet, but I'm sure they are Dianthus Barbatus or Sweet William. The unopened flower head looks right to be Sweet William. I also agree that there is a time and a place for the use of common names. I know that I would not be able to id some of my stuff it all you guys talked using botanical names only. I also understand Everts comments, but for the most part, we are English speaking people and learning Finnish would be a silly expectation. I think that a little give and take.......common and the only way to go.

Baa, the buds do look like pincushions, the petals are fringed, but it is not heavily scented. I thank you all for your comments... :-)

Newnan, GA(Zone 8a)

Evert, blap!!


Then I agree with Poppysue, it's a Sweet William (or if your Scottish - Stinking Billy *G*) even without the heavy scent.

Deep South Coastal, TX(Zone 10a)

I think it looks like a sweet william too. The roots on the dianthus family look like a mat of spun fiber. That's one way to tell them apart.

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