Gardening Questions And Answers
Light: Lavender needs full sun and well-drained soil to grow best. In hot summer climates, afternoon shade may help them thrive. Soil: Lavender grows best in low to moderately-fertile soils, so don’t amend the soil with organic matter before planting. Lavender performs best in neutral to slightly alkaline soils.
Lavender Care Plant lavender in full sun and well-drained soil (add organic matter to improve heavy soils). Starting with the proper conditions is essential for successfully growing lavender. Water plants deeply but infrequently, when the soil is almost dry. Prune every year immediately after bloom.
A potted lavender with yellow leaves is usually a sign that there is too much nitrogen in the soil due to fertilizer or soil that is too nutrient rich (Lavenders prefer low to medium fertility soil). Lavenders are drought resistant plants that only require watering very infrequently when established.
While Lavender is usually regarded as a summer-blooming flower, some Lavender plants are early bloomers with their magnificent blooms appearing early in spring. Others are late bloomers with blooms opening up in midsummer and lasting until late summer. Some bloom almost continuously from spring to summer’s end.
Lavender plants cross-pollinate in the wild and often self-sow after an initial seasonal bloom, resulting in successive generations from seeds during the same year. You may find that cross-pollination creates seeds that are desirable natural hybrids, especially if you grow several lavender varieties in your garden.
Lavender’s growing requirements include neutral to slightly alkaline soil with pH values of 6.5 to 7.5. Well-draining soils are essential. Plants don’t grow well in clay soils, highly organic soils or acid soils. If you use acid soils, lavender probably won’t die immediately, but it will likely be short-lived.
More than it needs fertilizer, lavender prefers at least six to seven hours of full sun and well-drained soil. Established lavender needs fertilization only twice a year: once in the spring and fall. Lavender is appropriate for container planting and the same fertilization rules apply for lavender grown in pots.
You should not need to feed your lavender plants. Mulching: Since lavender is drought tolerant, it shouldn’t need mulch to conserve soil moisture, other than extreme cases. If you do mulch, use small sized bark or gravel, and be sure to leave several inches clear around the plant crown, or your Lavender may rot.
Staking: Lavender plants range from 1 to 3 feet tall and wide and do not require staking. Watering: Water young plants well. Once established, lavender is drought tolerant and doesn’t need frequent watering. Light-colored gravel or sand mulch can help with drainage and keeping the soil and plant warm.
There are hundreds of varieties of lavender, but many are specifically grown for their excellent oil properties, not for eating. The best edibles are English lavender varieties (Lavandula angustifolia) like Hidcote, Munstead, and Lady. You can use lavender in sweet and savoury dishes, but there is an art to it.
The reasons for lavender not flowering are usually because the plant is stressed. Lavenders are adapted to sandy soils of low fertility. If the soil is too rich and nutrient dense then the lavender will grow leggy and produce fewer flowers. Lavenders planted in overly acidic soil will harm that plant.
The most common reasons for lavenders turning yellow are; excessive nitrogen in the soil, too much fertilizer, over watering, poor soil drainage or high humidity. Over watering, poor soil drainage can be solved by amending the soil with sand or grit with to make a ratio of at least 30% sand to 70% soil.
Lavenders can wilt as a result of a contrast in conditions, because of over-watering, pots that are too small, as an adaptation to hot weather and nutrient rich soil. Lavenders can take time to adjust to their new conditions and often wilt temporarily as a sign of stress but soon recover as they become established.
Lavender is drought-tolerant, which means mature plants don’t need to be watered all the time like your other garden plants. Too much water can leave them susceptible to root rot and fungal disease. Young, newly planted lavender does need regular watering until established (either by irrigation or adequate rainfall).