The 5 Rules of Lavender

By on August 22, 2017
The 5 Rules of Lavender

Lavender won’t only be a beautiful addition to your garden, it will also make it smell heavenly too. It’s a plant that both you and your guests enjoy and it is also beneficial for bees.

If you are new to gardening, it’s worth noting that lavender is an easy to grow, evergreen shrub that is drought-tolerant and thrives in a border, container or even gravel garden – making it ideal for the more novice gardener.

But, do you know the five rules of lavender? No! Then before you reap the rewards of planting it, read on…  

  1. Plant between April and May

Lavender is best planted in the spring, between April and May – as the soil is warming up. It will then be ready to flower in the summertime.

  1. Provide well-drained soil and plenty of sun

While lavender is easy to grow, it needs the right growing conditions. Being native to the Mediterranean region they will thrive in any poor or moderately fertile, free draining soil – this makes it particularly ideal for chalky or alkaline soil.

However, lavender will be short-lived if planted in heavier soils like clay – so it is best to avoid these. If this isn’t possible, you can prolong their life by adding organic matter and gravel, which will help to improve the drainage.

You can also grow lavender in a raised bed or in a container – if you do this, choose 6-8in wide terracotta pots with plenty of holes in the base so the water can drain.

Also keep in mind that they will require a warm, sheltered, sunny spot that is not too draughty.

  1. Give them space

You need to give your Lavender some space – plants should be spaced 90cm (3ft) apart, or if growing a hedge – 30cm (1ft) apart and for larger cultivars these should be planted 45cm (1.5ft) apart.

  1. Trim and cut back regularly

You must prune lavender every year – this helps to keep them in shape and pro-long their life.

For an established plant you will want to remove the flower stalks and about 2.5cm (1in) of the year’s growth – ensuring that some green remains. You should do this after flowering, in late summer. Click here to find out more about pruning your lavender.

  1. Water little and often

This is particularly relevant if you have planted your lavender in pots – you don’t want the plant to become water logged so should avoid leaving it to stand in a saucer. Water both little and often and you will avoid damaging it by over watering.  

Watering should be more regular in summer, but make sure you keep it on the dry side during winter – which may require moving them to a greenhouse.

Look after your lavender and you will find that it won’t only add to your garden, it is useful too. You can cut them for vases indoors, use them as pot pourri or make them into scented sachets. If you have a pond they can help to clear the water if it turns green and you can even drape your tea towels or table clothes over them, so they pick up the floral fragrance!

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The 5 Rules of Lavender