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Growing Lavender – Tips on Raising the Beautiful Floral Plants

Lavender is an evergreen fragrant herb that is generally appreciated for having a relaxing aromatic effect. This Mediterranean shrub grows best in a sunny, dry and stony environment; but if properly cared for, it can also flourish in a wet and colder climate.

Growing LavenderPHOTO BY FLICKR.COM/SLIDESHOW BRUCE

Growing Lavender - The Essentials

Lavenders are easier to grow from plants rather than from seed. In growing lavender, it is essential that the soil is well drained so the roots will not be drenched. If you have a weak soil, you can add some gravel or organic compost to improve its quality. The key is to keep the roots from a saturated soil and provide a good quality soil for the plant to develop well. An alkaline soil is what works best for lavenders. This can ensure good growth and helps in enhancing the plant’s fragrance. If you want to form a hedge, spring is the best season to plant lavenders; pruning it back will help as well. In growing lavender, it is important that adequate water supply is maintained until the plant is already established. It is proven that this is a tough plant that is draught-resistant once they established. Air circulation is also very vital; make sure that they are planted with proper spacing between plants as humidity can hamper its growth.

Lavender Seeds - How to Grow

The most common lavender seeds available in the market are vera, munstead and hidcote. In order to develop well, the seed will need robust, concentrated light source. Purchasing a grow lamp can help to ensure that adequate heat is being received by the seeds. It is vital that you do not plant the seed too deep for them to absorb the heat being provided by the light; covering them with only a thin layer of soil is also essential. It will take about two weeks before you will be able to see sprouts come out of the lavender seeds. Once the sprouts start to surface, they need another three to four months before they can be ready for an outdoor planting. To make them ready, you need to let them adjust to the outdoor climate by leaving them outside for a few hours every day. Gradually increase their exposure to the outside environment until they are used to the outdoor air, sun and rain.

Lavender Plants - Proper Pruning

To be able to maintain healthy lavender plants, it is important that they are regularly pruned. Pruning lavender must start from its early development; if possible while it is still in their pots. The idea is to introduce lateral branching by cutting new growth and cutting off flower buds. Doing this will ensure a bushy growth essential in developing a hedgy lavender bush. If the lavender plants are not properly pruned, the center is expected to be woody and hardened. It is important, however, that when a new growth is being pinched, there are still green leaves that are left behind; otherwise, the plant may die. Pruning must be done regularly. If three years have passed and the lavender has not been pruned, heavy pruning may kill them. It is best to leave them not pruned because doing so will no longer make any difference to their growth.

Written by Melanie Gray

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