With one of the strongest fragrance among Lavenders, Lavandula x intermedia ‘Grosso’ is a vigorous grower which produces exceptionally large and rich, deep violet flower spikes up to 6 in. long (15 cm), hence its common name of ‘Fat Lavender’!
Left to their own devices, lavender can become woody and ungainly, so to keep plants compact and attractive, it’s best to trim them annually in late summer, just after flowering has finished. Remove any spent flower stalks and about 2.5cm (1in) of leaf growth.
The flower head is made up of multiple of tiny flowers. Lavender plants bloom in summer in white, purple, blue and lavender colors, depending on the variety. The aromatic flowers are dried or distilled to extract the scent. At the end of the flowering season, seeds develop on the flower head.
Properly stored, dried lavender will generally stay at best quality for about 2 to 3 years. To maximize the shelf life of dried lavender purchased in bulk, and to better retain flavor and potency, store in containers with tight-fitting lids.
So, the best time to cut the flowers for drying is when the buds are bright purple, and right before they open. You can still dry the flowers after they open, but they won’t be as fragrant, and may lose their color after. Learn exactly when and how to harvest lavender here.
Lavenders with higher oil content, such as Lavandula x intermedia ‘Grosso’, will stay fragrant longer. Squeeze or crush the flowers to release the scent. You …
Lavender originates in the sunny Mediterranean and needs at least six hours a day of sunlight to produce its fragrant blooms. Don’t plant your …
When lavender plants are at their prime with a healthy bunch of flowers, the scent is strong and does not need an …
Pruning Lavender Cut back new growth to give vigor to the plant. Pruning lavender is one of the most helpful growing tips I learned from the internet. With a …
You can harvest lavender any time during the day. But be sure to cut the flowers before the buds open for the best fragrance and flavor. You can also pick them after they bloom, but the oils won’t be as strong.
Simply use your nose and eyes to identify lavender plants. Identify English lavender (L. angustifolia) by its sweeter fragrance with less of a camphor odor. You can also identify English lavender by its bloom period, which begins in early summer.
Lavender essential oil contains many different types of compounds, but one in particular—S-linalool—is responsible for giving the plant a well-known sweet aroma.
French lavender is large and will grow from about 2 to 3 feet (61-91 cm.) tall and wide, while English lavender stays much smaller and more compact, although it may grow up to 2 feet (61 cm.). Bloom time. The flowers on these plants are similar in size, but they last much longer on French lavender.
All are scented, some more than others – so sniff before you buy! If you cut your Lavender in mid-July, and hang in a warm dry place indoors, the deep blue colour can last all year round and you can top up the scent with a few drops of Lavender Oil once it starts to fade.”
Any lavender variety will grow in a container, but some are better suited than others. Dwarf Blue, Munstead, Hidcote, Sweet, Sharon Roberts, and Lavender Lady produce flowers fast and stay a manageable size in pots. – Cut lavender stems when the lowest blossom opens. Make the cut slightly above the first set of leaves.
Choose smaller lavender varieties for indoors. They adapt better to pot growing and also fit beneath a grow light. French lavender (Lavandula dentata) varieties grow well indoors. They’re not as fragrantly potent as English lavender (Lavandula angustifolia), but they adapt better to interior conditions.
An annual pruning is an important step for long-lasting lavender (Lavandula spp. and hybrids) plants. Without it they grow a large, lanky, woody base that can split open — it looks bad and shortens the plant’s lifespan.
Cutting the dead flowers off your lavender plant (Lavandula spp.) is a good habit. Deadheading cleans up the appearance of the lavender plant, prevents the seeds from spreading and may prompt reblooming depending on the variety.
Unpruned lavenders tend to become woody and have decreased blooms. However, lavender should not be pruned during the winter. Unlike many perennial plants and shrubs that can be pruned now, it is best to wait to prune lavender until after bloom in spring or in early fall before any danger of frost.
Best Fragrant Lavender For Drying & Preserving
‘Provence’ is a lavandin, or hybrid lavender type, which are known for a high output of essential oils. It’s no surprise that ‘Provence’ is the lavender most frequently grown for use in scented products, including soaps, lotions, sachets, potpourri, and more.
Camphor. One key difference between English Lavender essential oil and oil produced from Lavandin, is that Lavandin oil contains a much higher percentage of camphor. Typically English Lavender essential oil contains between 0%-0.6% camphor, whereas Lavandin oil contains between 6%-10% camphor.
Lavender plants go dormant in the winter, and sometimes it takes them a while to show signs of life come spring. Always wait until at least May before deciding that a plant is dead! You don’t want to pull out plants pre-maturely.
Fresh, cut lavender bunches can be put in a vase of water for 2-3 days. They will last up to 10 days in water, but if you want to dry the bunches, remove from water after 3 days, cut off brown parts of the stem and hang to dry.
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