Do Carnations Have Thorns? Characteristics of Carnation Flower

As carnations go, thorny varieties are not particularly common. However, a few types can have sharp points along their petals. Generally, these carnations are more potent and less sweet than their softer counterparts. In general, carnations do not have thorns. A few types can have sharp points along their petals, but these are generally more potent and less sweet than softer varieties.

The perpetual flowering carnation, which may have been developed through hybridization between border carnations and cottage pink (D. plumarius), grows to a height of up to one meter (three feet), has a stockier build, and bears larger flowers than its border carnation ancestors. It flowers almost continuously in the greenhouse. In addition, the florist industry requires miniature (baby) and spray forms of perennial carnation. These are developed commercially.

Characteristics of Carnation Flower

Plants of the Magnolia genus can either be evergreen or lose their leaves in the winter and instead develop smooth-margined alternating leaves. The flowers, often cup-shaped and fragrant, are found at the very tips of the branches. Each flower has three sepals, six to 12 petals that are grouped in two to four series, and many stamens that are organized in a spiral. The multiple basic ovaries that are located middle eventually develop into a cone-shaped fruit that is a referral aggregate of follicles. One seed is contained in each follicle that makes up the fruit. The seeds, often a dark red, tend to dangle down from the plant using delicate threads.

Carnations are perennial flowers with fringed petals in various colors, including pink, red, white, purple, green, and yellow. Carnations may be found in gardens all over the world. Before the advent of bioengineering, the hues blue and purple did not exist. These colors were created by taking the genes of petunias and snapdragons and combining them. The fragrance of the blossoms is both sweet and warm.

There are three primary forms of the carnation body. Flowers arranged in a spray pattern have clusters of petals distributed across multiple stems. The huge flower heads, which only produce one flower per stalk, are the ones that are most commonly used in floral arrangements. The last type is the dwarf carnation, which bears a cluster of little flowers on a single stalk.

On average, a carnation plant will grow to 31 inches. The stems produce leaves with a bluish-green hue and stem with notches. Carnations may die from overwatering, underwatering, poor soil quality, pest infestations, and exposure to extreme temperatures. Proper care, including providing adequate sunlight and avoiding overwatering, can help prevent carnations from dying prematurely.

Meaning and Symbolism of Carnation

Carnations are connected to a plethora of different meanings and symbols for a variety of reasons. Carnations have a wide range of connotations, the most common of which are love, attraction, and superiority. Not only can they symbolize feelings and emotions, but also the passage of time and essential occasions.

At Oxford University, students about to take their first exam are expected to wear a white carnation on their lapel, as this flower symbolizes the occasion. The wearer must, after that, wear a pink carnation to every subsequent exam. The student chooses to commemorate the successful completion of the last exam by donning a red carnation.

The following hues have been linked to particular feelings and temperaments:

  • The color red denotes intense love and affection.
  • White is an unadulterated love and unending good fortune.
  • A sense of loss caused by the inability to share one’s love
  • Traditional expressions of condolence include the gift of a funeral flower, purple funeral flowers, disillusionment, and being turned down.
  • A girl’s first love is pink.

Significance in Culture

Carnations, like many other types of flowers, occupy an essential role in the culture of many different countries.

In “A Winter’s Tale,” which Shakespeare penned in 1601, the line “The finest o’ the season are the carnations” can be found.

Many songs center around carnations. For instance, the owner of the “White Sport Coat” is described as having a “white sport coat and a pink carnation” in the song “White Sport Coat.” In the timeless song “American Pie,” the protagonist is described as “a lonely young bronkin’ buck” who “had a pink carnation and a pick-up truck.” The protagonist also possesses a pink carnation. One further mention of carnations can be found in the song “Carnation for Rebu,” specifically in the line “A carnation for Rebu and a charming tune/to serenade my wife all night long.”

In addition, carnations have been the subject of paintings created by various artists. Edouard Manet depicted in his painting “Flowers in a Crystal Vase” a bouquet of various flowers that included carnations. The vase was made of crystal. “Spring Bouquet” is a painting by Pierre-August Renoir that depicts a spring arrangement made out of carnations bursting out of a porcelain pitcher.

On the Hawaiian islands of Maui, Ohau, and Kula, amongst others, carnations are one of the most important floricultural crops. A primary flower used in many of the lies that are worn in Hawaii, which are used for occasions such as graduations and celebrations of May Day.

The crimson carnation has been designated as Ohio’s official state flower. It is named after William McKinley, who served as the governor of Ohio and the president of the United States from 1897 until he died in 1901. He was shot and killed. The crimson carnation, which McKinley favored and wore frequently, was selected to represent Ohio as the official state flower in his honor.

In addition to Spain and Monaco, Slovenia considers the carnation its national flower.

The carnation represents those who were born in January as their birth flower.


Carnation plants need soil that drains well and at least four to five hours of direct sunlight per day to thrive. The soil needs to be rich and slightly damp. Keep an eye out for leaves that have turned yellow, which signifies that the plant has received excessive water. Continuous bloom can be encouraged by removing spent flowers as soon as they appear. Carnations can only be harvested once the plants have been fertilized. At the end of the growing season, the plant should be trimmed to flush with the ground.

Before arranging flowers indoors, you should cut the stems at an angle of 45 degrees while keeping them under running water. This intentional cut keeps the stem open, which makes it easier for the plant to absorb water. Before arranging, ensure the vase or container has been meticulously cleaned using warm water and mild detergent. The next step is to incorporate clean water and a floral preservative; sugar is an excellent choice for this role.

When you have finished placing the carnations in the vase, take the time to remove any leaves that have fallen below the waterline. Give the carnation a trim, cutting them every couple of days slightly above the node. This makes it easier for the stems to get water into the plant. If the water is cloudy, you need to replace it with fresh water. Depending on how well they are maintained, arrangements can last anywhere from two to three weeks.