Gardening Fix

Reliable Lavender

IMG_1562I have never met a person called Lavender. I suddenly feel quite bereft. There is of course Lavender Brown with her particular interest in divination, a crush on Ron Weasley, and an untimely death at the claws of werewolf Fenrir Greyback. Lavender Brown was a bit ditzy. The lavender in my garden is a solid performer. Low maintenance and reliable.

I always associated lavender with England. Maybe because of the variety English Lavender which is not English.  Actually it is from the Mediterranean – which explains why it does so well at our place.  We are technically sub-tropical (apparently) but we are not as humid as the coast. Lavender loves warm weather. It copes well with hot weather – but humidity, not so much. Our lavender started flowering in July – the middle of winter if you agree with the traditional view of seasons. I believe our spring starts in August – so lets say it is flowering in late winter and early spring.  The bees are a buzzing around it now.  I would show you, but have you ever tried to photograph a bee? It requires more patience than I have.

Caring for lavender is easy-peasy. The most, most important thing is lavender does not like wet feet. Dry feet. That means a raised garden bed.  Ours is in a bed about knee height, friends with neighbouring rosemary. The rosemary was there when we moved in (making it many decades old) so I knew it was a spot for lavender too.

I hardly ever water the lavender. Maybe with the hose in summer but it is not in my sprinkler zone.

Once a year – early winter or late autumn I throw it some all-round fertiliser and I have read it likes some lime every second year so I have started doing that too, but I would not say either is necessary. If I forget to fertilise, I still get flowers and a healthy plant

It gets a bit leggy and ugly, trim it back – but not the woody stems.

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