Lovely Lavender in the Garden
Lavender is fantastically fragrant, and attracts loads of bees, butterflies, and moths to the garden. It's airy form and gray-blue woody leaves provide visual interest whether potted up in a container or planted out in a landscape.
In climate zones 6 and warmer, plant lavender outdoors in the spring in well-drained soil in full sun. In colder zones, lavender will need either a thick layer of mulch or other protective plant cover to survive the winter.
As a Mediterranean native, lavender appreciates full sun and grainy, well-drained soil that is neutral to slightly alkaline in pH. Lavender doesn't do well with overwatering or nutrient-rich soils — water only in extreme heat and skip the fertilizer. Lavender grows in a self-contained shrubby mound 1-3 feet in diameter depending on the variety. It does not require staking or other supports. As a woody plant, lavender produces gorgeous, fragrant flowers on new growth in early to mid summer. In the early spring, cut the woody stems of older plants back by 1/3 to help encourage new growth and more flowers.
Place pot in a sunny south window where it will receive as much light as possible. In low light, growth may become weak and spindly and the plant will cease flowering. Rotate the pot weekly for uniform growth.
Ideal temperatures for indoor growth are 45 to 50 degrees F at night and 60 to 65 during the day. Provide good air circulation, but avoid the direct flow of forced hot air heat. Drench the soil completely when watering and allow the pot to drain thoroughly. Allow the soil to become somewhat dry between waterings. Over- or under-watering may cause leaves to turn yellow or wilt.
You may cut and dry the stems for scented sachets, potpourri or small bouquets. Pruning encourages bushy, new growth, but may delay flowering, which occurs at branch tips.
Last updated: 12/20/2022
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