The first lavender is planted……..
We started a plot of 80 lavender plants by the corn & soybean bins in full sun. Since the ground is very fertile, we added 2 truckloads of sand and incorporated it into the soil to improve drainage. Sorry Dad!!! The rows were bermed to also aid in drainage. The land is flat at this location so it will not dry properly for the lavender to grow.
Different lavender varieties were purchased to see how they would react. Hidcote, Munstead, Provence, Vera, Pastors Pride, Grosso, Platinum Blonde and Phenomenal. We used different landscaping material to see what would work the best and what to do to decease weeds. Our final step was to increase the width between the plants to 4’ to aid in airflow to battle the humidity.
Plants were purchased primarily from a few big online vendors to start our experiment. We planted them over Memorial Day weekend. Just a little water here and there to get the roots to establish but not enough to keep them wet. Lavender are perennials and these plants could last 15+ years. It will be year 3 before they are really producing.
During that time, the plants are producing stems/flowers but the object these first few years is to prune them to keep growing more swags..where one becomes many. Pruning these plants in either fall to encourage the roots to really form or spring to have the plant larger to protect it from winter is a discussion on its own. In the fall of 2016 we cut back the plants near the wood to get ready for winter after many discussions with a grower in northern Illinois.