Plant of the Day (POD) : Spanish Lavander

Hello Everyone,

Today’s Plant of the Day is Spanish Lavander

Spanish Lavender

Native to the Mediterranean, Spanish Lavender adds a fragrant and colorful purple punch to your garden. Spanish Lavender require minimal watering and care while producing beautiful blooms during the spring and summer months. In light of the recent popularity of xeriscaping, Spanish Lavender is commonly used drought tolerant landscapes.

Growing:

Many Spanish Lavender plants are started as cuttings from a mother plant, creating a efficient clone of the mother plant. Another option is to grow from seed, though this comes with more complications.

Lavender seeds are difficult to come across and germination is difficult, requiring proper lighting and temperature for initial germination. After germinating, the plants take another 8-12 weeks to mature properly and be ready for transplant. You can add fertilizer to stimulate and accelerate growth, but you must be careful to prevent fungal growth.

When the plant is ready to be transplanted, you must prepare the soil carefully. Drainage is the most important factor in growing Spanish lavender successfully. An easy solution to drainage is to use compost in the soil, creating and introducing uneven particles that cause air pockets for better soil. Additionally, compost adds fertile organic matter to the soil while also leaving air pockets for root anchoring and growth. Lastly, lavender prefers full sun under all conditions, though they will need more water in their first year to establish roots.

Care:

Mulch and compost are important to condition soil and create ideal growing conditions for the lavender. Watering should be done whenever the top inch of soil has dried. You should prune the plant after every bloom, pruning is removing the flower wand stem( bright green) and leaves ( dark grey). The proper amount to prune is the leaves and 1/3 of the stem.

Now comes the fun part, harvesting the lavender for personal use! The perfect time to harvest is right after the dew has dried in the cool morning. Lavender is ready to harvest when the leaves are bright and colorful. If you are harvesting for the fragrance of the plant, harvest with a bucket filled 1/3 of the way with water. Submerge the base of the stem in the bucket as soon as possible, letting the water cool the stems, because lavenders cool themselves by releasing their fragrance.

Quick Fact about Lavender: Lavender can be used as a substitute for Rosemary and as a cure for headaches and insomnia!

Alex

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