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A honey plant with fragrant flowers and aromatic foliage, easy to grow, lavender is a staple in gardens.
It smells of the Mediterranean region! Lavender thrives in dry, well-drained, sandy or rocky soils, and in full sun.
"It grows in abundance, especially in Provence, where there are vast expanses of purple lavender fields in summer," says Caz Hildebrand, author of the magnificent book Herbarium, (published by Marabout).
Lavender, a honey plant
This round bush with gray-green leaves and flowers in spikes is particularly suitable for borders to structure the garden. There are 28 different species of lavender, with flowers in blue or white colors. The best known is true lavender (Lavandula angustifolia) which smells the most subtle, then aspic lavender (Lavandula latifolia), lavender butterfly (Lavandula stoechas) and woolly lavender (Lavandula lanata).
The lavandinIt is a natural hybrid that has the advantage of growing quickly, being particularly floriferous and hardy. On the other hand, its fragrance is less pronounced.
- Read also: How to prune lavender
Choose lavender according to the region
Depending on the variety, lavender can be more or less hardy: some resist down to -20 ° C, others down to only -5 ° C (such as English lavender or Lavandula dentata). "Despite its Mediterranean origins, true lavender generally resists cold very well", notes Philippe Collignon, in his book Create its gardens for painters, (published by Le Chêne).
- To read: All our articles devoted to lavender
Lavender pruning and cuttings
Planting the lavender can be done in autumn or spring, outside of frost. Space the feet 20 to 40 cm apart and water well at this stage (then it's a drought plant). The whole must remain dense to produce a nice effect. It requires little care but above all needs one or even two pruning per year: trim it after flowering, in September and then in March-May, when it restarts. A training size allows to restore tone. In addition, a light pruning when planting promotes root growth. Lavender is also one of the plants that cuttings particularly easily, between June and August. The ideal substrate pH is 6.5-7.5.
Finally, know that lavender helps relieve headaches, promotes relaxation and sleep. Bonus in the garden: it keeps the aphids thanks to its intoxicating scent between March and September!
- Read also: The 6 essential virtues of lavender
Visual credits: Lavender 1: © Hcast - stock.adobe.com Lavender 2: © Miroslawa Drozdowski Fotolia Lavender and bee: © Lo Kiki Fotolia