Lavender Planting Tips
By: Korshye Long
Director of Agricultural Operations at Lavender Hill Farm
Can I grow my lavender in a pot?
We really discourage growing lavender in a pot, but it is sometimes possible if you use one that is large enough and grow a smaller lavender variety. Just know that it will not live as long as lavender that is planted in the ground. Lavender roots are very similar to tree roots – they grow out horizontally and not downward. Growing lavender in a pot is not advised because the roots will get to a point where they cannot grow out anymore and will become root bound. Immediately planting lavender in the ground is the best option to insure longevity for your plant.
Planting lavender: Do’s & Don’ts
You will want to plant your baby lavender plug it into its permanent home in the ground (not a pot) as soon as possible.
Dig a hole, not only twice as deep as the container the plug is in – but also twice as wide in order to allow the roots to grow outwards.
DO NOT BREAK UP THE ROOT CLUMP AS YOU MIGHT WITH OTHER PLANTS
Add a generous teaspoon of hydrated lime to your soil when planting. Hydrated lime is sold at Lavender Hill Farm. Hydrated lime releases essential nutrients like Calcium and Magnesium into the soil to feed microorganisms and the new plant. Hydrated lime also increases the pH of the soil over a course of 7-14 days. Add the lime to the freshly dug hole and mix it up into the soil before adding the baby plant. You do not want the lime to sit in a pile at the bottom of the hole and have the roots of the lavender plug sitting on it – the lime will burn the roots of the plant! Proper mixing is a must!
What kind of soil does lavender like?
Lavender enjoys the beach! Sandy loam soil is the perfect growing conditions for lavender. Sandy soil promotes proper water drainage which is essential because lavender does not like wet feet.
What are the watering requirements for lavender?
For the first 2-3 weeks after planting, water the plant every day. After the 2-3 week period stop watering and let mother nature take over! If it rains within this 2 to 3 week period, you will not need to water that day. Stick your finger about an inch into the soil and checking the moisture level can help determine if watering is needed. If the soil is moist, wait until it is semi dry to water again. You never want the soil to be completely saturated, or have the plant be sitting in water constantly.
After your plants are established (in 2 to 3 years or more), you can water them occasionally in order to slow down the budding and to increase the color.
Lavender is considered a low maintenance plant after its been established. No watering is required after the plant matures. At Lavender Hill Farm we do not irrigate any of our fields, we just let Mother Nature do what She does best!
How much sunlight does lavender need?
Lavender enjoys full sun, 6 to 8 hours a day is ideal.
I’m curious about a couple things. What growing zone are you in and which species do you harvest?
Our Farm is located in Zone 5.
We grow 24 different cultivars of lavender at our farm that come from two main hybrid species ‘Lavendula Intermedia’, and ‘Lavendula Angustifolia’.