Lavender. Yes, you can grow it.

by Ray Allen

Everbody loves lavender, and Lavender "Munstead", the best for the US,  is a best-seller every year with our perennials.  There's all kinds of detail on growing it on the site; click here for the details.

But all you need to know is that lavender is really a desert plant--do not put it into "good garden soil", or it will simply die.  Thousands of lavender plants are loved to death every year in the US, since so many gardeners plant them in rich loam, and fertilize and water them to death.  Lavender is one of a good sized group of perennials that absolutely insists on quick-draining gritty soil--what most of us call bad soil--rocky, arid, desert-like conditions.  I always recommend making a part of your garden your "desert"--bring in some sand, maybe some gravel, and make sure that area is in full, baking sun and has perfect drainage.

Then in that spot, plant your lavender, liatris, yarrows, and other plants that hate the soggy, muddy soil we try to create for poppies, peonies, and all the others.  The photos here are of a famous lavender garden in Oregon.  The magnificent red flowers through the gate in the midst of the lavender are red crocosmia "Lucifer", a spring bulb we sell and one that makes a dramatic show with lavender as you can see below.  Unfortunately, you can't smell this garden on your computer, but trust me, it smells as heavenly as you imagine.

Perennial GardenPerennial Garden
  1. Sensational!™ Lavender, Lavandula x intermedia Sensational!™ harvested in a baskest

    Sensational!™ Lavender is an improved, easy-to-grow variety that makes growing lavender accessible to more gardeners than ever! Silvery foliage is topped by large, dense purple flo...

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    Sensational!™ Lavender Sensational!™ Lavender Lavandula x intermedia Sensational!™
    As low as $9.99 Sale $7.99
    Per Plant - 3" Pot
    Sensational!™ Lavender is an improved, easy-to-grow variety that makes growing lavender accessible to more gardeners than ever! Silvery foliage is topped by large, dense purple flower spikes. With a compact, dense habit and notable durability for sun, heat, and humidity, as well as cold tolerance, Sensational stands apart from many traditional Lavender varieties. A favorite of honeybees, these fragrant flowers will attract a wide range of pollinators. (Lavandula x intermedia)
  2. Phenomenal Lavender, Lavandula x intermedia

    Phenomenal Lavender has it all: exceptionally tolerant of both high heat and harsh winter, this easy-to-grow lavender even shows resistance to the effects of humidity. Highly fragran...

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    Phenomenal® Lavender Lavender Phenomenal® PP#24193 Lavandula x intermedia Phenomenal PP#24193
    As low as $9.99 Sale $7.99
    Per Plant - 3" Pot
    Phenomenal Lavender has it all: exceptionally tolerant of both high heat and harsh winter, this easy-to-grow lavender even shows resistance to the effects of humidity. Highly fragrant with concentrated essential oils, Phenomenal's spikes of purple-blue flowers attract butterflies and bees to the garden. Edible, deer-resistant and fast-growing, this silver-leafed lavender has left all other new introductions in the dust! (Lavandula x intermedia) PP#24193
  3. Long Blooming Lavender Collection

    The Long Blooming Lavender Collection includes 5 lavender plants that bring a graceful bouquet of aroma to sunny areas. Includes fragrant 'Munstead,' compact 'SuperBlue,' humidity-t...

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    Long Blooming Lavender Collection Long Blooming Lavender Collection Lavandula
    As low as $39.99 Sale $29.99
    Per Collection of 5
    The Long Blooming Lavender Collection includes 5 lavender plants that bring a graceful bouquet of aroma to sunny areas. Includes fragrant 'Munstead,' compact 'SuperBlue,' humidity-tolerant 'Phenomenal', intensely fragrant "Grosso', and pollinator attracting 'Hidcote.' All prefer fast-draining soils, so choose pots with bottom holes and allow plants to dry out between waterings. (Lavandula)
  4. Hidcote English Lavender

    'Hidcote' is a compact English Lavender that grows only 18-24 inches tall, with highly fragrant, deep purple-blue flowers. Excellent for both fresh and dried bouquets, this lavender ...

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    Hidcote English Lavender English Lavender Hidcote Lavandula angustifolia Hidcote
    As low as $7.32 Sale $5.86
    Per Plant - 3" Pot
    'Hidcote' is a compact English Lavender that grows only 18-24 inches tall, with highly fragrant, deep purple-blue flowers. Excellent for both fresh and dried bouquets, this lavender attracts bees and butterflies but repels deer and rabbits. Perfect for hot, dry sites and drought tolerant once established. Great choice for container plantings. (Lavandula angustifolia)
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