How To Look After Lavender Plants
Lavender plants originate from the Mediterranean, India and the Middle East. Most commonly used in UK gardens, it is one of the most favoured hedges.
Lavender hedging has attractive features and characteristics, such as having colourful flowers that bloom in late spring. The evergreen foliage can also be enjoyed all year round, providing aromatic fragrances. Lavender plants are also an excellent habitat for wildlife and attracts many butterflies, bees and insects, bringing life to the garden.
Lavender hedging is also a sturdy hedge and can sustain the colder weather in the UK. Once you’ve decided which Lavender plant to buy, knowing how to take care of lavender is the key to long-term success with this plant.
How To Care For Lavender Plants
Learning how to care for lavender once planted or even before purchasing is crucial, as you’d have the ability to help Lavender hedging grow and flourish to reach its full potential.
Many Lavender plants can cope with colder temperatures such as -15C, which means they can be left in the garden all year round, and don’t need to be covered in winter seasons, where we may have cold frosts and snow.
Care for lavender by putting it in the correct place and soil.
The top priority of how to take care of Lavender is to understand where the hedge should be located and what soil it needs. As mentioned earlier, lavender hedging is a Mediterranean plant that thrives in the sun and will need a lot of sunlight. It is therefore not advisable to plant lavender in shady or damp areas.
Lavender plants prefer dry soil, including chalky soils. Avoid heavy clay soil or soil that will become waterlogged during the wetter seasons.
Look after lavender plants by watering
Take care for Lavender hedging by watering when necessary. Recently planted Lavender will require more water than a well-established lavender plant, and should be regularly watered during the first summer.
After the Lavender hedging has been established, the plant should be able to cope with less water and be tolerant of drought. Potted lavender plants may require more watering in the summer, as the roots have less soil and can reach water and nutrients from the ground.
When caring for lavender, it’s also important to understand that you shouldn’t waterlog the soil. Lavenders need moisture, just like any other plant, but also oxygen. If your soil is continuously wet, there won’t be enough air pockets for the lavender to breathe.
Care for lavender by pruning and deadheading
Lavender plants may become woody over time, so take care to prune regularly. It is recommended that you trim the hedging of Lavender every year, in late summer, after the flowering season has ended.
Deadheading is where you remove any dead or dying flowers or leaves to make a lavender ready to blossom next year. However, leaving the flowers to the end of the flowering season will provide food for seed-eating birds, such as sparrows and finches.
When pruning, be sure to read all guidance and information for your particular type of Lavender. Some guidance may vary from one species to another. See our guide to pruning lavender plants for more information.
It is also common to take care of Lavender through harvesting. As Lavender plants provide aromatic fragrances, many people have chosen to harvest Lavender. This is done by snipping the stems before the individual flowers open and tying them together to hang in a dry, sheltered place. Harvested lavender can be used for attractive pot-pourri and culinary purposes.
See our guide, When To Harvest Lavender, for more information.
Other Common Issues & Problems with Lavender Plants
Lavender plants are usually trouble-free and very low maintenance. However, the prompt identification and quick resolution of problems is key to taking care of lavender plants.
As all plants attract insects, there are some kind of bugs that could potentially harm your lavender shrub. Bugs such as the Rosemary beetle, the Sage and the Ligurian leafhopper and the Cuckoo Spit will feed on the lavender and cause cosmetic damage. Treatment is not usually necessary but you may wish to look out for these bugs in case they become a nuisance to the Lavender.
Need more advice?
If you need further guidance on how to take care of lavender, our Hopes Grove Nurseries are Lavender hedging specialists with extensive knowledge and experience on how to take care of various lavender species. If you need any help, please contact us today.