There’s daffodils waving their wonderful yellow trumpets, the first lambs appearing in the fields and the other day I even saw people out without their coats on! It must be Spring! And along with Spring comes warmer soils meaning that it’s time to start planting this year’s new lavender plants. Early April through to May are the best time of year for planting Lavender, so have a look at our simple lavender growers guide below.
Where to plant your lavender
Lavender has its origins in the warm, dry climates of the Mediterranean (maybe that’s why it likes Jersey so much) so choose a sunny spot with well-drained soil. For a plant that produces such a delicate a fragrance, lavender is also surprisingly tough and is perfectly happy in any poor or moderately fertile, free-draining soils and is ideal for chalky or alkaline soils. However if you have heavier soils, such as clay or clay loam, lavender can be a little short lived and rapidly become woody at the base. To counteract the effect of heavy soils on lavender we recommend adding organic matter and gravel to improve the drainage and plant on a mound.
When and how to prune your lavender
Some books recommend Spring pruning for lavender, and if that works for you go for it, however we favour pruning after the plant has finished flowering in late Summer or early Autumn. On established plants simply use secateurs (or pruning shears are great for a lavender hedge) to remove the dead flower stalks and about 1 inch of that year’s growth. Remember never to cut your lavender back to the old wood, as it is very unlikely that new growth will appear.
Where to buy your lavender plants
Now obviously we would say this, but buying your new lavender plants from an established lavender specialist is a great idea. We have teamed up with a wonderful local nursery that specialises in sending plants by post to offer some of our expertly grown lavender plants for you to buy for your own garden. We have two types of lavender available for you to buy directly from us:
- English Lavender (lavandula angustifolia), is one of the hardiest varieties of lavender and very well suited to the British climate, this variety typically grows to about 60cm high and has short flower stalks with vibrant purple flower heads. It is from this variety that we extract our wonderfully velvety lavender essential oil.
- Decorative French Lavender (lavandula stoechas), slightly less hardy than the English Lavender and without as much oil producing capacity, this variety of lavender is a fantastic addition to any garden due to its long flowering season and decorative large petals (that look a little like ears!) that adorn the flower spikes.