This pretty little flower with the blue-purple anthers showed up in my garden this year. It was hardly noticeable with the other weeds growing at the edge of the garden, until one day a flower burst open in all this glory!
This flower was named for a place in England, on the east end of London that rumor has it the plant once grew in abundance. It was mistakenly identified by Thomas Johnson (a 17th century herbalist), what he more likey had was a Maiden Pink (Dianthus deltoides). The Deptford Pink has supposedly not grown there in historic times, if ever!
I have been unable to find any reference to the uses of this plant. So if anyone has information, please let me know so I can update my records!
Due to saponins in the leave, the leaves can cause dermatitis in sensitve people. I have handled this plant extensively and had no adverse effect from it.