Baby's Breath Fast Facts

Baby's Breath Fast Facts image by USDA-NRCS PLANTS Database / Britton, N.L., and A. Brown. 1913. An illustrated flora of the northern United States, Canada and the British Possessions. Vol. 2: 72.
Baby's Breath Fast Facts image by USDA-NRCS PLANTS Database / Britton, N.L., and A. Brown. 1913. An illustrated flora of the northern United States, Canada and the British Possessions. Vol. 2: 72.

Overview

Baby's Breath, easily grown in rock gardens, beds and sunny borders, is popular as a cut or dried flower. A European native, Baby's Breath has naturalized throughout the United States, and according the the USDA Plant Database, it is considered a weed in California and Washington. Plant with care in these regions.

Botanical Name

Baby's Breath is known botanically as Gypsophila elegans. It is sometimes confused with Galium mollugo or False Baby's Breath, but the two are unrelated.

Habit

Dwarf varieties of Baby's Breath range from 12 to 18 inches tall while standard varieties range from 2 to 4 feet. Flowers form in dense clusters.

Color

Baby's Breath has small, white or pale pink flowers with light green foliage. For long-lasting arrangements, cut flowers when half the buds are unopened.

Life Cycle

Plant annual Baby's Breath in spring or early summer. To maintain a season-long crop of blooms, spread seed every 2 weeks until mid-summer.

Requirements

Baby's Breath prefers slightly alakaline soil with a pH range of 7 to 8.5. It prefers full sun.

Hardiness and Range

Grow in moist, well-drained soil in zones 3 through 9. Baby's Breath cannot tolerate acid soil.

References

  • Thrifty Fun: Baby's Breath
  • Texas A&M: Growing Baby's Breath
  • USDA Plant Database
Keywords: baby's breath, dried flowers, Gypsophila elegans

About this Author

Moira Clune is a freelance writer who since 1991 has been writing sales and promotional materials for her own and other small businesses. In addition, she has published articles on VetInfo and various other websites. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in English from Hartwick College.

Photo by: USDA-NRCS PLANTS Database / Britton, N.L., and A. Brown. 1913. An illustrated flora of the northern United States, Canada and the British Possessions. Vol. 2: 72.