How to Grow Lavender

Lavender is an herb that has been used for centuries and offers a plethora of health benefits. Originally grown in the Mediterranean, lavender flowers and oil are widely used. Dried lavender flowers are used in many natural remedies which proved to have antiseptic, producing calming and relaxing effects. English Lavender is the most common strain of the lavender family which is used in herbal medicine. Because of the tannin, mineral substances, and essential oils, lavender flowers have antiseptic, nerve stimulating, and calming effects. Essential oils derived from a lavender plant serve as a wonderful medicine. Lavender essential oils are used in cosmetology, perfumery and many other areas.

Soil, Planting, and Care

Set out plants 12 to 18 inches apart in an open area with full sun and good air circulation. ]Plant lavender in well-drained, slightly alkaline soil with a pH between 6.7 and 7.3. You can add builders sand to the soil before planting to increase drainage, which is vital because lavender will not tolerate excessive soil moisture or humidity. To further improve drainage, plant lavender in a raised bed, along a wall, or near the top of a slope. In an herb or perennial bed, ensure good drainage by planting lavender on a small mound. Lavender flowers bloom in summer; you can clip faded blooms to encourage continued blooming throughout the warm season. Prune lightly to promote branching, especially in spring once the plants show new growth.

Sprinkle bone meal or other phosphorus-rich fertilizer around each plant in the fall to make it stronger and more winter hardy. Work the fertilizer into the first inch of soil, or let the rain soak it in.