Growing lavender is very beneficial. It is beautiful, you can use the flowers in bouquets or make just a lavender bouquet. And you can harvest the flowers for potpourri or to fill lace sachets. I have had two problems growing lavender.
- When I first started about 15 years ago I didn’t know how to properly prune it so the branches got very woody and gangly.
- The last two years the extreme cold has killed some of it.
So I am left with some lavender growing from very woody branches that are quite ugly when no other flowers are covering them up. A lot of these branches now have dead spots. They always used to continue to grow lavender and I didn’t worry about the ugly, woody stems. They were always eventually covered by other flowers, usually zinnias. This year I have to do something about it because a lot of the woody branches are showing.
I was thinking of pulling all the lavender out because it is not native to Maryland. It is native to the mountainous zones of the Mediterranean but is now found in many parts of the world. If we continue to have winters where the temperature drops to zero degrees and stays for a while then the lavender is not going to make it. About one third of it died last year in the cold. Of course, maybe I could put straw around it to insulate it.
Growing Lavender for the Pollinators
I decided not to pull it out because when it blooms it is covered with all kinds of bees and wasps. The pollinators in my garden really appreciate the lavender!
Taking Cuttings for Lavender
So I am going to take cuttings from the lavender and try to start new plants. I got the courage to do this after reading Deep Rooted Wisdom where the author just takes lots of cuttings and roots them. Some work out and some die but if you take a lot of cuttings then you will be left with some that grow! Here you can see my cuttings in bud vases while I am waiting for them to grow roots! The best time to take cuttings is in the spring and the fall. Here is more Info on Lavender from the University of Maryland Medical Center.