“The ease with which old garden pinks escape and multiply in the wild is proof of their tough constitution.”
Carnations are easy to grow if you have the right climate. They like a lot of sun ,and they do not like cool foggy weather. In San Francisco they will develop mold and fungus type of rots and die. The like rich soil as long as that soil is well-drained. The do not like clay soil. Create a soil made with sand and healthy compost, as well as some bagged soil mixes. Allow the soil to dry out between waterings. They do not like humidity in the air. The dry summers of Northern California are ideal conditions for carnations. They may even do ok, in the dry air of the desert, but one would need to remove the desert soil and replace with normal garden soil or a healthy soil mix. The can be divided every three years, just like some hostas. They may do better after division.