Purple Carnation - A Guide to Purple Carnations

Purple Carnation

Purple carnations are lovely flowers which symbolize unpredictability, spontaneity and capriciousness. They send out a message of power and luxury. Purple is known to be associated with spiritual fulfillment as it stimulates peace of mind. Therefore, purple carnations are often used for ceremonial arrangements.

Purple Carnation Description

  • Family: Caryophyllaceae
  • Origin: Purple carnations are cultivated for over 2000 years. Native from Eurasia, their main use is ornamental and the first ones to “assemble” them in flower garlands were the ancient Greeks and Romans who thought of them as being the “Flowers of the Gods”.
  • Sun exposure: Purple carnations need about 4 or 5 hours of full sun.
  • Height: Purple carnations grow from 10 to 20 inches.
  • Soil: Damp, slightly alkaline soil is preferred when growing purple carnations.
  • Leaves: Purple carnation’s foliage is greyish-green in color, with a long, pin-looking shape.
  • Blooming time: Purple carnations bloom mainly during the cool times of the year. For a continuous blooming all year long, you should feed them lightly with a liquid fertilizer (preferably an all purpose one) once every 6 weeks.
  • Maintenance: Purple carnations should not be watered excessively as their foliage can turn to yellow and thus, rotten.
  • Propagation method: Purple carnations can be propagated through planting seeds, by cuttings and by division.

Purple Carnation Species

The light, spray and dwarf carnations are the three types of pink carnations. The light are the regular ones, with one big flower on top of the stem, the spray are the ones which have more smaller flowers and the dwarf ones are those which have on one stem several flowers.

Purple Carnation Meaning

Purple carnations are both a symbol of capriciousness and an indicator of unpredictability, spontaneity and whimsy. As you may know, purple goes hand in hand with royalty, ceremonial parties, pride and success. So, the meaning of purple carnations can easily be understood.

In France, the purple carnation is also used in ceremonies, but it is generally known that it represents the traditional funeral flower, given as a sign of condolence.

Purple Carnations Arrangements

Purple carnations arrangements look lovely in any room. If they are grouped alone, they revive in richness and splendor, and if they are mixed with other colors, they enrich the arrangement with vigor and distinction.

Purple carnation arrangements go marvelous with spring flowers like white button spray chrysanthemums and little hot pink carnations with oregonia mixed in the center, composing quite the whimsical arrangement.

Also, purple carnations arrangements are perfect for weddings as they shall impose a ceremonial sense of royalty. The bridal purple carnation bouquet may be complemented with the groom’s boutonniere very nicely. Also, carnation centerpieces and corsages look wonderful if purple.

Purple Carnation Bouquets

Purple carnation bouquets are perfect for proms. A hand-held lovely purple carnation bouquet might just do the trick for your prom date especially if it is ribbon-wrapped in silk.

Now if you are looking for a more romantic purple carnation bouquet, you should definitely mix them up with red roses, lavender carnations, hot pink freesia, intense pink hydrangea, and lavender roses and phlox. This gorgeous mix of intense colors will give the bouquet a fresh summer look.

Also, a very nice way to say “I love you, mom!” is sending your mother a round, rich purple carnations bouquet mixed with seasonal flowers, wrapped up in Taiwanese style.

Purple Carnations in Gardens

If you want to plant purple carnations in your own garden, you should know that there are four steps in order to accomplish that.

First, you look for a place in the garden that has a very well-drained soil and that it is fully exposed to the sunlight during day time. Secondly, remove any rocks or weeds and smoothen the area, then spread fertilizer over the area and mix it into the soil. Thirdly, plant the carnations at the same level they were planted in the pots, indoors. And fourthly, water the soil but don’t keep the carnations wet, just damp, at least until they are established.


Cut purple carnations last longer if you add a little salt, cut their stems from the bottom and change their water daily, while putting salt in the new water.