Is Lavender A Succulent

Full light and proper drainage are essential for lavender. In the winter, it is more likely to die from too much moisture than from the cold. Although the plant will be more susceptible to cold temperatures than it would be in the ground, a container is a great way to promote drainage.

Can I grow lavender in a container?

Absolutely! If you reside in a wet or humid area, a container can be your only option for providing your plant with the proper drainage and air circulation it needs to avoid rot. While lavender grows well in sunny California gardens and the dry, arid climate of the Provence region of France, it can become brown from a fungal infection in areas with higher rainfall and humidity. The best container is a terra cotta pot filled with premium potting soil. Additionally, lavender thrives in soil that is slightly alkaline (pH 6.7–7.3). You might want to add lime to the soil at a rate of 2 to 3 ounces per cubic foot of potting mix because most potting soils have a mild acidic pH. Additionally, choose timed-release granules or a product that contains nitrogen in the nitrate form when fertilizing.

I have never planted lavender before and need some information about its habits. How much is it likely to spread?

The average height and width of a lavender shrub are 20 to 24 inches. The foliage may only be a foot tall when not in bloom because the height includes the flower stalks. Thyme, oregano, and other herbs tend to spread more readily than this plant does. The plant’s ability to reach its full potential size is also influenced by the growing environment.

I just purchased lavender. Can I use it in cooking?

Yes. It gives teas and sweets a lovely floral flavor. The flower is typically blended with a liquid component in the latter to release its aromatic oil. The flowers are then separated from the cream, honey, or other flavor-carrying substance.

My plants look great and are growing but not flowering. Any suggestions?

In many places, lavender is a perennial herb, or at least it is if it has particularly good drainage. The best approach to ensure proper drainage is to grow plants in containers. But if the potting soil is overly fertile, the plant can develop leaves and stems instead of flowers. Reduce your fertilizer use, especially if it contains a lot of nitrogen. Changing to a bloom-booster formulation might be an option, as might ceasing to feed it for a few weeks.

What is the best way to keep lavender plants over the winter?

In locations with a lot of rain, growing lavender plants can be difficult, especially in the winter. Lavender is regarded as an annual by many gardeners in the Southeast. Planting lavender on a raised bed, pot, or on top of a retaining wall is advised. Plants in zone 5 and warmer regions will be winter-hardy if there is enough drainage. In zones 5 and colder regions, lavender cultivated in a container will require some protection over the winter.

Can one lavender plant be split into several in the springtime?

No. Lavender is a woody shrub and does not form clumps like other herbs do, which spread in the form of underground or above-ground stems.

Can I plant lavender in succulent soil?

Lavender grows carelessly once given the right conditions. Good soil is essential to success. The ideal environment for lavender may include cactus soil.

Is lavender a shrub or a plant?

Small evergreen shrubs called lavenders with hoary, gray-green, linear leaves. Small nutlet fruits are produced by the purple blooms, which are sparsely grouped on spikes at the tops of long, naked stems. The flower, leaves, and stems of the plant are covered in tiny star-shaped trichomes (plant hairs), which are responsible for the aroma. Plants grown for human consumption rarely generate seeds; instead, they are propagated through cuttings or by dividing the roots.

Does lavender require all-day sun?

Light/Watering:

  • Although afternoon shade may be appreciated in the hottest climes, lavenders require full sun.
  • Once established, plants are fairly drought resistant, although they flower best if moisture is prevented from drying out.

pH and fertilizer/soil:

  • Even in infertile soil, lavender grows well.
  • Although plants may benefit from an occasional side dressing of compost, more feeding is not required.
  • The soil must have excellent drainage because damp soils will kill plants, especially during the winter.
  • If your soil’s pH is below 7.0, apply lime to get it closer to or slightly over neutral, which is optimum.
  • Mulching with gravel is advantageous because it helps protect plant crowns from excessive moisture.

Pests/Diseases:

  • Lavender’s leaves and flowers both have potent essential oils that deer and insect pests don’t like to consume.
  • In humid climates, fungal issues could occur, but they could be avoided by giving your plants sufficient drainage and strong air circulation.

Lavenders are excellent as an accent plant in the garden where they go well with many perennials, such as Shasta Daisies, Hardy Geraniums, Roses, and Catmints (Calamintha) (Leucanthemum x superba).

Pruning: Because lavender is a woody subshrub, pruning methods should be appropriate.

  • After new growth arises, prune in the spring.
  • After flowering, plants can be sheared back and shaped, but do not cut low into old wood.
  • Winterize plants without touching them.
  • Trim back elder plants by a third every three years if they start to look unattractive.

Harvesting and Using Lavender: Just as the delicate small blooms start to open, the flower spikes release their strongest smell.

  • Long stems should be cut and gathered in bunches; in warm weather, this will take four to five days.
  • Spread out the stems on a screen or sheet to allow for easy airflow.
  • The stems of dried or fresh flower spikes can be used in arrangements; the flowers can be removed and used in sachets and potpourri combinations.

Reflowering: A second flush of flowers may appear later in the season if old flower spikes are chopped off after the first bloom period.

Dividing/Transplanting:

  • Plants that are younger and less woody are better at handling division.
  • Early spring is a good time to transfer plants, but when you dig them up, leave plenty of dirt around their roots.

Calendar of Care

Ahead of Spring:

  • Before pruning, wait until new growth emerges from the woody stems.
  • Shape plants and remove deadwood.
  • If necessary, divide or transplant.
  • Compost should be applied to the sides of plants, away from the crowns.
  • Check the pH of your soil, and if it’s acidic, adjust it to a pH of 6.5 to 7.5.

Midspring:

Mulch with gravel to protect plants as the earth heats.

Early Spring:

  • After flowering is ended, cut back plants.
  • If the weather is exceptionally dry, add to natural showers.

Summer:

  • In places with high humidity, keep an eye out for fungal issues and take required action.

Fall:

  • Stems should not be pruned.
  • In harsh areas, softly cloak plants in evergreen boughs to thwart the drying effects of winter winds.

Is lavender a yearly or perennial plant?

Under the correct circumstances, lavender is a perennial that can last for several years. Lavender prefers scorching heat and dry soil because of its Mediterranean ancestry. The most likely causes of your lavender’s failure to thrive include overwatering, excessive shade, and high humidity levels.

The best lavender kinds for lower climates are English lavenders and their hybrids, which can withstand cold temperatures up to Zone 5. They will, however, develop most effectively in a protected area with winter protection. Spanish and French lavenders are more tolerant of the moist circumstances in southern gardens in hot, humid regions, but they should be separated to allow for sufficient air circulation.

Consider growing lavender in pots if your winters are too harsh or your soil is rich and heavy. They need to be planted in a premium potting soil with good drainage and receive at least 8 hours of direct sunlight each day in order to thrive. Bring your container plants indoors during the winter and put them in a window with natural light. For suggestions on how to use lavender in containers, see these recipes.

Does lavender thrive in containers?

Due to the good drainage, all lavender plants thrive in pots and containers. However, some lavender cultivars are better suited to growing in pots than others.

The English lavenders (Lavandula angustifolia) are my preferred variety of lavender and are what I suggest for container gardening:

  • ‘Hidcote’
  • ‘Munstead’

Since both of these lavenders are English varieties, which are cold hardy to USDA zone 5, they can withstand colder temperatures and the pot can stay outside all year.

In addition to having the best smell of any lavender, Hidcote and Munstead lavender also bloom beautifully in the midst of summer.

The larger varieties of lavender, like “Vera,” which can grow 3 feet across and is therefore better suited to growing in garden boarders, can grow to a size that works great in pots without having to repot them too often because they stay a relatively compact size of around 12 inches (with annual pruning).

The majority of French and Spanish lavender varieties, include well-known types like:

  • Borland pink
  • ‘Anouk’

The appropriate conditions allow these lavenders to produce flowers for up to three months while maintaining a reasonable size that doesn’t overwhelm a pot. However, compared to English lavender types, the scent is less overt.

They should be brought indoors for Winter protection as they are not as cold-hardy as English lavenders and can perish in a severe frost.

While French lavender frequently dies after 5 years even in ideal conditions, English lavender can thrive for up to 15 years or longer with proper care.

How frequently do I need to water lavender?

With lavender flower spikes towering above its gray to green foliage, lavender is a bushy, strongly perfumed perennial herb. It has culinary and medicinal use in addition to being a lovely garden plant. Here’s how to cultivate lavender in the garden and harvest it.

The most widely grown variety of lavender is Lavandula angustifolia, also known as English lavender or common lavender and hardy to USDA Zone 5.

Called “Lavender’s primary needs are a lot of sun and good drainage because it thrives in the English environment. It does not care about the type of soil, and bees and butterflies are drawn to the garden by its presence. Place lavender plants close to a seating area or along a walkway.

Lavender should be planted somewhere that receives 6 to 8 hours of direct sunlight every day ” (“full sun).

In most types of soil, from the least fertile to the most fertile, lavender grows well. Lavender just only one requirement of the soil: good drainage. Wet regions and standing water may promote root rot. Compost or aged manure can be added to compacted or clay soil to improve drainage. Find out more about soil improvements and getting the soil ready for planting.

When to Plant Lavender

  • After the soil has warmed up to at least 60F (15C) and the risk of frost has passed, it is ideal to plant lavender as a young plant in the spring.
  • Select larger, more established plants when planting in the fall to ensure their survival over the winter.

How to Plant Lavender

  • We advise either buying small starting plants from a garden nursery or taking a softwood cutting from an existing plant because lavender is difficult to produce from seed. In chilly climates, seedlings must overwinter indoors since they may take up to three months to germinate.
  • Lavender should be spaced 2 to 3 feet apart. Plants typically grow to a height of 1 to 3 feet.
  • To keep weeds to a minimal, add mulch (rock or pea gravel work particularly well). To avoid too much moisture and root rot, though, keep the mulch away from the lavender plant’s crown.

Learn how to grow lavender by watching the following video:

How to Care for Lavender

  • After planting, water your plants once or twice a week until they are established. Water mature plants once or twice weekly until harvest, then every two or three weeks after buds emerge. (Overwatering is frequently indicated by yellowing foliage.)
  • Plants in cooler growing regions might require more winter protection. Evergreen boughs or straw can be used as a winter mulch to protect plants from chilly winds and temperatures. Learn more about how to care for lavender plants in the winter.
  • Growing lavender in a pot and keeping it outside in the summer and indoors in the winter is another alternative for cold climates. Place the pot in a south-facing window with as much light as you can while inside. Since the plant will be dormant at this time, water lightly.

Pruning Lavender

When the first green leaves appear at the base of established plants in colder climates in the spring, prune them. To prevent the plant from growing lanky and naked at the base, cut back about one-third of the top. Avoid cutting into old wood, though, since it won’t grow back.

To maintain the plant neat, the flowering stems can be cut off after the flowers have faded or plucked while they are in bloom.

  • The most popular variety, English lavender (Lavandula angustifolia), is hardy to USDA Zone 5. There are countless variants in a wide range of sizes and hues, including white, pink, blue violet, and various shades of purple. It frequently has two blooms in one season.
  • “Hidcote” has silver-gray foliage, rich purple blooms, and a compact shape.
  • “Munstead” features compact form, violet-blue blooms, and dark green leaves.
  • ‘Miss Katherine’ has mounding shape, fragrant leaves, and rich pink blooms.
  • Lavandins, a hybrid of English and Portuguese lavender (L. latifolia), are often larger plants with a single, late-summer flower.
  • “Phenomenal” is a robust variety that tolerates heat and humidity well. It also has long flower spikes and is resistant to common root and foliar diseases.
  • ‘Provence’: a robust, long-stem cultivar that has a strong fragrance
  • Only Zones 7 to 9 are commonly considered to be winter-hardy for both French (fringed) lavender (L. dentata) and Spanish lavender (L. stoechas).

How to Propagate Lavender from Cuttings

  • After the plant blooms, take a softwood cutting of several inches of stems without flower buds.
  • Each stem should have the foliage on the bottom half removed before being placed in sterile potting soil or horticultural vermiculite.
  • Moisture is essential, not rooting hormone: Water thoroughly and spray frequently.
  • Give roots three weeks to emerge.

Harvesting Lavender Flowers

The herb lavender is excellent for drying. This is how you gather it:

  • When the oils are at their highest concentration, harvesting is done in the morning.
  • Cut the stems as long as possible after around half of the flower buds have opened.
  • Rubber bands should be used to bundle the items together.
  • Hanging the lavender bundles in a protected, cold, dark, and well-ventilated area will help them to dry.
  • The blossoms can be gently shaken off of the stalks and placed into a covered jar once they have fully dried after a few weeks. The flowers should be kept in a cool, dark area.

Use your dried lavender to create charming gifts like lavender sachets. Lavender sachets can help keep your towels and bedding smelling good, keep bugs and moths away, and even encourage deep sleep.

Storing Lavender

To keep towels, linens, or clothing smelling good and to ward off moths, store lavender flowers in a covered container somewhere cool and dark. You can even toss them directly into a sachet. Try placing the sachets inside a pillow if you struggle with insomnia so the soothing aroma will help you nod off to a sound sleep.

  • Lavender was utilized in the embalming procedure by the ancient Egyptians. In shrouds that had been pre-soaked in lavender water, they shrouded the deceased.
  • The Romans, all the way back in A.D. 77, are known to have used lavender to repel insects and cure insect stings. To keep moths away, stuff your towels, bedding, or clothing with a lavender sachet.
  • The herb is renowned for its relaxing properties as well. Try placing a lavender sachet under your pillow if you have trouble sleeping. Sleep can be naturally induced by using lavender oil.