This section is from the book "Handbook Of Hardy Trees, Shrubs, And Herbaceous Plants", by W. Botting Hemsley. Also available from Amazon: Handbook of hardy trees, shrubs, and herbaceous plants.
Perennial tufted evergreen herbs with linear radical leaves and leafless flower-scapes. Flowers pedicellate, collected in dense solitary heads. Involucre scarious, sheathing the scape, and reversed or turned downwards. Petals cohering at the base persistent. There are about thirty species, inhabiting the sea-coasts and the mountains of the temperate regions of the north, a few reaching the Arctic regions and South America. Flos Armeriae is the Latin name for the flowers of a species of Pink.
1. A. vulgaris, syn. A. maritima, Statice Armeria, etc. Common Thrift, Sea-Pink, or Lady's Cushion.- Leaves linear, usually 1-nerved, and more or less pubescent. Flower-scapes in cultivation from 6 to 12 inches high. Flowers pink, rosy red, lilac or white. This species is common on the sea-coast and the summits of lofty mountains in this country, and has besides a very wide range of distribution. A. alpina is a dwarfer mountain form of this species.
2. A. plantaginea. - A glabrous stouter-growing species with broader 3- to 5-nerved leaves and taller scapes. Flowers bright rose, not so profuse as in the last. A. leucantha is a white-flowered variety of this species. Found in Jersey, and southward in Europe.
3. A. cephalotes. - A taller species when fully developed than either of the foregoing, the scapes rising to a height of 12 to 18 inches or more. Leaves broadly-lanceolate, glabrous, acute. Flowers deep rose or crimson. Native of the Mediterranean region.