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Hi Mark...love your show. I have successfully had "pinks" in my garden - in the front of a fairly large rock garden, for about 5 years. This year I have had problems. I have been deadheading them - but the last time I did, nothing grew back. On one of my plants I noticed that it looked like there were a lot of ants in the middle. Could that have been that plant's problem? My other pink plant just stopped producing any flowers. I see a patch of a different color green in the middle of each (not the blue-greenish color that I am used to). Is this root rot? I have no idea what happened to these plants that I so love. Can you give me some advice? Thanks...Linda
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These Dianthus or Pinks require well-drained soil and full sun to perform their best. I think you may be right that the ants may be causing problems with the root system. Their tunneling can cause the roots to be exposed to air rather than being in contact with the soil. This would cause them to dry out especially in the center and they would not be able to take in water or nutrients. You can spray an ant control to get rid of the ants. Bonide, Bayer Advanced, and Ortho all have products that are listed for ant control. Be sure to read and follow the label directions. You should also liquid feed the plants to help them recover once you get rid of the ant problem.