Tips & Ideas

The Secret to Thriving Lavender

Tips & Ideas

Phenomenal Lavender, Lavandula intermedia ‘Phenomenal’, planted just last season. These plants are happy! The secret to thriving lavender is full sun and great drainage with little moisture. This means at least eight hours of direct sun and keeping lavender plant beds away from lawn areas that are irrigated.

The name Lavandula is derived from the Latin word “lavar” for “to wash” because the ancient Greeks washed themselves with lavender oil to clean themselves and to smell fresh.


Munstead Lavender

Phenomenal Lavender


Hidcote Lavender


Which Lavender is best for me?

If you want an all-purpose lavender that can resist hot and cold, stave off fungi, and still have a full fragrance, then look no further than the Phenomenal Lavender (Lavandula intermedia ‘Phenomenal’ ). This rugged jewel is highly adaptable, and it is the toughest lavender ever developed. Better Homes and Gardens even called this distinguished herb a “Must Grow”. Or, if you’re wanting a little blue in your landscape, then pick up the extra hardy Munstead Blue Lavender (Lavandula angustifolia ‘munstead’). Want the purples to really pop out? Then select the highly fragrant but low maintenance Hidcote Purple Lavender (Lavandula angustifolia ‘Hidcote’ ).

Growing Guidelines 

Once you find your perfect lavender, pick out a spot in the garden. Of course, if you’re limited on space, lavenders thrive in container pots. But, if you’re wanting to enhance the garden, lavender is great as a hedge or for garden edging. First off, set your herbs 12 to 18 inches apart with access to full sun and excellent air circulation. Add builder’s sand to the soil, or put gravel around the plant to increase drainage. Gravel adds an extra bonus by allowing the water to evaporate quicker. Lavender hates wet soil and too much humidity. The added drainage will keep your plant healthy.

Pruning Prudence

Pruning really has no place in the lavender bed with an  exception for arranging and drying.   Plants should be cut down by 2/3rds every three years. The extra incentive for cutting is that you have a wealth of cut flowers for almost any floral arrangement in the home. The flower spikes have an incredible scent just as the flowers are peaking their heads in the spring. Cut the stems long and add to your vase. Or dry them out in the sun for an extra boost to your potpourri collection. Best of all, the lavender will have a second bloom period for months of divine scents inside and outside. The bees and butterflies will be happy too!

Bye, Maintenance!

If you follow the guidelines above, then the rest is easy. The lavender’s resilient nature (especially the Phenomenal variety) makes it stand strong against even the harshest of summers and winters. Pests like bugs, deer, and rabbits are repelled by the scent. Fungus is rarely a problem as long as the soil is well-drained. A flower has never been this easy, yet so regal!