Perennial Overview: Lavender

Perennial Overview-Lavender l www.sophisticatedgardening.comDiscover how to grow Lavender with instructions on starting seed, transplanting, site selection, care and maintenance, water and fertilization requirements, and  pests and diseases.

Lavender Garden Guide

In this guide you will find:
Lavender Stats at a Glance
Planting Instructions
Lavender Care and Maintenance
Lavender Diseases
Lavender Pests

 

Lavender Stats at a Glance

Botanical Name: Lavandula angustifolia

Common Name(s): English lavender

Height: 1-3 feet

Soil Conditions:  Well-drained, light soil

Sun: Full sun

Soil pH Conditions: 6.4-8.2

Planting Instructions

Can I Start Lavender from Seed?

Lavender can be propagated through seed, division, and cutting.

Cutting. Cuttings should be taken from new growth around the edges of the plant in early spring.

Division. Divide lavender in the early spring

Seed. Lavender started from seeds germinates slowly.

To start indoors, fill individual peat pots with a fertile commercial soil starter and moisten.  Sprinkle the seeds on the surface of the soil. Press them lightly into the soil to ensure contact with growing medium. Place in a room with a constant temperature of 70-75°F.  Cover with clear plastic wrap to maintain the soil moisture and temperature.  Keep the soil moist.  When seedlings appear, remove the plastic wrap and repot in individual pots and set out in a cold frame or greenhouse for the first winter.  Plant in early spring.

 

Time to Germination: 1-3 months
Light/Darkness Requirements:
Light
Optimal Temp. for Germination: 72-75°F

 

 

When Do I Plant Lavender?

Lavender can be planted after the last frost and the soil has reached at least 68°F.

Soil Temperature: 68°F

 

Where Do I Plant Lavender?

Make sure the spot that you choose for lavender is in full sun. Lavender does not perform well even in small amounts of shade.

Lavender plants perform best in light, well-drained soil with an alkaline pH but will grow in nearly any good garden soil that receives full sun and is well drained. Incorporating several inches of organic matter into the soil when preparing the bed will improve growth and development.

Soil Type: Well-drained
Sun Exposure: Full sun
Soil pH: 6.4-8.2

 

How Far Apart Do I Plant Lavender?

Space plants from 12”-36” depending on use.  Plants need adequate air circulation for optimal health, but can be spaced closer together if attempting to form a hedge.

Lavender Plant Care and Maintenance

Once established, most perennials require very little routine care and maintenance.

How Often Should I Water Lavender?

For many perennials, average rainfall is sufficient to keep the plants healthy.  Supplementation may be necessary in droughty conditions.

The key to watering Lavender is to maintain a consistent moisture level.  This is especially important during flower and fruit development. The soil should be moist to a depth of 6”.  The plant can be kept on the dry side during winter months.

Water the soil around the plant. Overhead watering will encourage disease.  Drip irrigation is best.

Mulch around the plant will help to lock in moisture.

Lavender will tolerate dry conditions fairly well, but will not tolerate being waterlogged.

 

Should I Fertilize Lavender?

Most perennials do not require a specific fertilization regiment.  Fertilizing decisions should be based on a soil test.  If a soil test cannot be obtained and you feel that your perennial bed would benefit from fertilization, keep it light.  Work in a small amount of a low nitrogen fertilizer, such as 5-10-5 around the plants in the early spring.

Fertilize the soil around the plant at least 6” from the plant base. Irrigate into the soil.

 

Additional Care Instructions

Deadhead spent flowers to discourage self-seeding and to encourage continual blooming.

Every few years, cut plants back heavily. Prune as soon as the blooms fade to allow time for regrowth prior to winter.

 

Transplanting Lavender

If you live in an area with mild winters the best time to transplant lavender is in the fall giving the roots time to establish before the harsh heat of summer hits.  In areas with harsh winters you will need to wait until spring.

Lavender Diseases

The most common diseases associated with this plant include: no major diseases.

Lavender Pests

The most common pests associated with this plant include: no major pests.

 

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