Herbal plants

Planting and caring for lavender

With its wonderfully fragrant flowers, lavender is a classic that should not be missing in your own garden. The characteristic fragrance experience brings back memories of Provence. The robust plant belongs to the mint family and is suitable for romantic plantings, as well as for gravel gardens, large pots, borders and much more . Even in the natural garden, the scented plant should not be missing. With its long flowering period and large abundance of flowers, it is an ideal feeding plant for many insects. Overall, the woody plant is easy to care for and robust. It is important that you choose the appropriate oneConsider the location and the right soil for the Mediterranean plants.

Worth knowing LocationPlanting Watering Cutting Overwintering In the tub Harvesting Species Pests & Diseases FAQ

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Things to know about lavender

Botanical name: Lavandula angustifolia (L. officinalis)
Other names: real lavender, narrow-leaved lavender
Use: hardy perennial, for balconies and containers, aromatic plant, bee pasture, short-term decorative plant in the house, dried flower
Origin: coastal regions of the Mediterranean
Flower colors: lilac, violet, pink, white
Flowering period: May to August depending on the variety. If you cut back immediately after the first bloom, there will be a second bloom in late summer.
Special features: garden plant with an incomparable scent and a long flowering period conveys a feeling of summer, sun and vacation.

In which location does Lavandula angustifolia feel most comfortable?

All fragrant lavender do well in a sunny spot. The optimal location is sheltered from the wind and warm. You can plant the fragrant perennial directly in well-drained soil or enjoy it as a container plant. But you should think about the right protection in winter. In shady locations, growth is slower and the flowers are sparse. Lavender as an ornamental plant requires a well-drained substrate, standing water is absolutely not tolerated. In locations with heavy, loamy soil, soil preparation is goodimportant before setting. Use gravel and sand for good drainage. Nutrient-poor soil is better suited than heavy clay soil.

How do I plant my lavender in the garden?

When planting, the planting hole should be at least twice the size of the root ball. When planting, put high-quality potting soil in the planting hole. Natural fertilizer promotes soil life and helps in the growth phase. A dose of lime also helps with rooting. Do not use NPK fertilizer, because the easy-care plant thrives best in poor soil. At home, the subshrub grows mainly on nutrient-poor soil with a high proportion of stones. Acidic soil is not suitable for the Mediterranean plant. Depending on the composition of the soil, a drainage layer is essential for good plant development. The biggest enemy of the roots is standing water and compacted soil.

Our gardening tip: The right time for planting is spring and early summer. With sufficient soil temperature and moisture, new roots are formed and the young plant has established itself at the site by winter.

How should I water my lavender?

Thorough watering immediately after planting is important. The amount of water depends essentially on the size of the root ball and the soil moisture. However, as a rule of thumb, you can give 3 to 5 liters per plant. Repeat the watering once a week for the first 3 to 4 weeks, depending on the radiation and precipitation, but avoid standing water! It is also important that you never water over the foliage. Put the water directly below the root. This prevents fungal diseases. Has your young lavender established itself?and new fibrous roots are formed, watering is only necessary in extremely hot and low-rainfall phases. Even in winter, watering can be helpful on frost-free days.

How do I cut my scented lavender correctly?

For a compact form and bushy growth, it is important that you prune your provence lavender regularly. Only with bold pruning is the spherical shape retained and the subshrubs vigorously sprout new shoots. With the 1st cut in March/April (after the last frost), you ensure that the plant will sprout again with many shoots. Cut back the aromatic plant by 2/3, but only so far that herbaceous parts are still standing. A cutbackuntil the old wood should not be done, because then the herb will no longer sprout. You cannot significantly rejuvenate woody lavender by pruning. It is therefore important that you prune regularly. Cut a second time right after the flowers have faded. Shorten the plant by 1/3. Ideally, the faded flower stalks are removed and the growth habit is harmoniously designed. The second cut should be made no later than the beginning of August.

Our gardening tip: if you prune regularly, you prevent excessive woodiness and promote branching. Start with young plants and carry out the first cut as soon as they are planted. By removing the terminal buds, the side shoots are stimulated to sprout. With the right cut, the growth form is significantly influenced. Already in the next year the subshrub is more luxuriantly branched and harmoniously structured.

How do I overwinter lavender plants in the garden?

As a Mediterranean plant, it is good if the winter is not too cold and wet. In rough locations, you should protect the wood from severe frost with brushwood or some leaves. A thin layer of rotted compost will help the bale get through the cold season. It is important that the cane is not cut back in autumn, because the risk of frost is particularly high on fresh cuts. In years with high winter humidity, Mediterranean plants suffer. You can only remove the brushwood and, if necessary, fertilize from March onwards. But it is important that you fertilize little. Real lavender planted in the bed is very frugal and one of the weak consumers. This group forms new shoots and flowers without large doses of nitrogen. If the subshrub is a bit hesitant to sprout in spring, some organic natural fertilizer can help from April.

How do I properly care for my lavender in a pot?

When planting in a tub, you should make sure there is a drainage layer, because the Mediterranean plant does not like waterlogging at all. It is important that the water drainage is always guaranteed, because standing moisture damages the fiber roots. As a potted plant, the flower cuts a fine figure, bringing a delicate scent and atmosphere to balconies and patios. The wonderful scented plants are easy to care for and can be combined in many ways. Is fertilized during sprouting with an organic, low -nitrogen fertilizer. This activates soil life and the nutrients are available for weeks. To hibernateplace the container plant against a wall or eaves to avoid too much soil moisture in winter. Before winter, wrap the bucket in decorative winter protection such as fleece or jute. This will prevent the roots from being damaged by severe frost. The cut follows the care of the planted lavender plants. Basically, it takes little time and effort to care for lavender. Our gardening tip:Make sure that the Mediterranean plant has sufficient soil volume available. In a pot that is too small, the risk of overwintering is too great. The winter hardiness varies quite a lot with the different lavender varieties. Butterfly lavender is one of the most sensitive varieties. Lavender plants in the ground are less sensitive to frost than specimens in pots.

What you should consider when harvesting lavender flowers

With our tips, you will succeed in drying and preserving the characteristic scent in the best possible way:

  • If possible, cut in the midday sun, so the moisture of the night has already evaporated.
  • The stems can be easily cut off with sharp herb scissors.
  • The optimum condition is reached when the flowers are already open in the middle of the panicle. Basically, harvest before the flowers are fully open.
  • For quick drying, hang small bunches upside down in a shady, dry place. You should protect your scented treasures from direct sunlight, otherwise the essential oils will evaporate quickly.

Once the purple flowers are well dried, they can easily be stripped from the stems and processed further.

Buy dried flowers

Would you like to learn more about aromatic herbs and their diverse uses? Browse our blog «Preserve the full aroma of the aromatic herbs now»

Herbal recipes with lavender
Here you can find delicious recipes and learn how to use lavender. Our instructions are ideal for copying. Enjoy your meal!

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Which Lavandula species are there?

French Lavender – Lavandula stoechas

Like true lavender (Lavandula angustifolia), this peculiarity belongs to the mint family. Characteristic of this species, also known as Arabian lavender, is the spike-shaped flower, which is different from the usual species. The filigree bracts on the flowers make up the special charm of this magical plant species. The light purple to pink panicles exude a pleasant scent and magically attract butterflies and bees.

A location in full sun with well- drained, nutrient-poor soil is important for the Mediterranean beauty. The ideal location has a pH of 6.5 to 5.0. This means that the plants do not do well on heavy loamy soil and, if necessary, the soil should be slightly improved with a mixture of sand and rhododendron earth when planting. A drainage layer can be incorporated to prevent waterlogging. French lavender planted in the garden is only partially hardy. In longer phases below -10°C, the subshrubs suffer more than the hardy varieties of Lavendula Angustifolia.

Planted in the pot, we recommend a frost-free and bright overwintering of the plants at temperatures around 5°C. With its unusual shape, French lavender quickly brings a holiday feeling to the balcony and terrace. The perennial is best suited as a seasonal decoration in balcony boxes, baskets, pots and as an underplanting for rose stems and other stems. Pruning after flowering will encourage reblooming and prevent seed formation. Cut the lavender in half with sharp scissors. After just a few weeks, new flower stalks form and another pile adorns the flowering plants in late summer.

There are also a large number of lavender varieties within the real lavender group, which differ in growth behavior and flowering. In addition to species with compact growth, there are vigorous lavender varieties and variations in flower color.

What pests and diseases can lavender get?

All types of lavender are relatively insensitive to pests due to the high proportion of essential oils. Lavender plants are often planted in a targeted manner as a natural defense against sucking insect pests. At the right location, the effort for lavender care is quite low.

root rot

If the Mediterranean plant is in unfavorable locations and is somewhat weakened, rot can occur. The damaged meridians can no longer absorb moisture and dry up as a result. The most important preventive measures are good drainage and low watering.

Black spots on the lavender branches

indicate a fungal disease. Cut off affected branches generously and dispose of them with household waste.

FAQ – Frequently asked questions about lavender

Why is my lavender blooming sparsely?

    • The plant is too shady. Move the plant to a sunnier spot and watch the blooming again.
    • If the plants are old and woody, there will be no bud formation.

If necessary, there was waterlogging. Make sure that the plant is not waterlogged.

Which plants are suitable for the combination?

      • All plants that prefer a sunny location are best suited.
      • The plants should have similar requirements as lavender.

Carnations, rockroses, ornamental onions, blue fescue, sage and thyme are good for combining.

Are there lavender seeds?

You can propagate lavender well by sowing. The hard-shelled seed needs 21 to 28 days at 20 to 25 °C for germination. However, the most common method is vegetative propagation by cuttings.

Can Lavandula be propagated by cuttings?

Cuttings are easy to cut and root. The best time to do this is early spring or late summer. Use sharp scissors to cut the cuttings only from healthy plants, which should not yet have flowers. The young plants develop best in seed trays or in a nursery with a transparent cover. After 3 to 4 weeks the first roots have formed and the young lavender plants can be repotted in pots with potting soil.

Are lavandula and roses the ideal partners?

Lavender and roses are often planted together. Visually, this is a magical combination. However, the plant species have completely different soil requirements. Roses require significantly more moisture and fertilizer. A compromise can be a planting distance between the two species. This is how the plants work together, but each can be cared for individually.

Is the Mediterranean plant suitable for balcony box planting?

For sunny locations, lavender can be used as a balcony plant. However, it is important that light soil is used and that the other plants in the balcony box have the same moisture and fertilizer requirements . Good examples are low grasses, rock roses or garden sage. Plantings in combination with other Mediterranean herbs such as rosemary, thyme or oregano are also optimal. For overwintering, the boxes should be placed in a bright, frost-free room.

Can lavender dry up in winter?

In years with little rainfall, lavender plants can dry out due to the sun ‘s rays. If the ground is frozen or there is too little moisture in the ground, the leaves will evaporate the water faster than the soil absorbs it. Despite good care, it can die off. Check that there is still green visible when the branches bend. Wait a little longer and with a bit of luck young shoots will form.

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Lavender – tips and ideas for processing
Have you followed our planting and care tips and is your lavender blooming in all its glory? In our lavender DIY you will learn how to properly use your blooming lavender.

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