Lavender can be planted anytime from early spring to late autumn. Planting in the spring will give your lavender time to establish through a full growing season.
Choosing Your Lavender
Before planting you need to choose which type of lavender you wish to grow, this is because not all lavenders are winter hardy.
The most common and easy to grow is English lavender. French and Spanish lavenders are less hardy and shorter-lived.
They are best grown in pots and placed somewhere frost-free during the winter.
I’ve always sold lavender that is ready for planting, but you can buy plugs online or by mail-order.
This is a cheaper way of buying lavender. However, the plugs need to be carefully looked after for several months before they are big enough to be planted in your garden.
Where To Plant Lavender
Lavender needs fast-draining soil and a very sunny spot. It will thrive in poor, dry or moderately fertile soil, including alkaline and chalky soils.
It will not tolerate a shady and damp position. Your lavender will also become very unhappy if planted in heavy clay soil or any soil that gets waterlogged in the winter months.
Lavender is a versatile plant and can be used in a border, herb garden, as a low growing hedge or in a pot.
How To Plant Lavender
Planting In A Border
Before planting prepare the soil by digging it over where you plan to plant your lavender, removing any weeds during the process.
If planting in heavy soil, plant lavender on an 8in (20cm) mound, so the roots aren’t sitting in wet soil.
Space plants around 3ft (90cm) apart if you are planting in a group.
Planting In A Pot
Plant in a large pot, 12-18in (30-45cm) in diameter that has large drainage holes.
Use a multipurpose or loam-based compost, mixing in lots of coarse grit or perlite to improve drainage.
Plant your lavender so it sits at the same level as the pot that it was grown in.
Planting As A Hedge
If you wish to make a hedge with your lavender space them 12in (30cm) apart and 18in (45cm) if it is a larger cultivar.
Once planted water your lavender well, and then water regularly during its first season.
Once your lavender is well established it will be drought-tolerant, and will rarely need watering when planted in the ground unless we have a severe drought in the summer.
Lavender planted in pots needs regular water in the summer as they dry out quicker than those that are planted in the ground.
Lavender thrives in soil that is low in nutrients, so they generally don’t need to be fed.
Deadheading the spent blooms on your lavender will encourage more the form.
However, if you like to feed the birds that visit your garden leave the spent flowers in place towards the end of the flowering season as food for seed-eating birds.
We have a whole post dedicated to pruning lavender check it out here.
Lavender tends to be trouble-free if grown in the conditions it enjoys. However, if grown in wet soil, lavender can suffer from root rot, leading to its premature demise.
Few pests like to feed on lavender, and they cause only cosmetic damage to the foilage, so treatment is not usually necessary.