The scent of this popular herb, which comes from the Mediterranean region, is unmistakable. You can enjoy it while blooming in the garden and on the balcony or terrace.
Lavender (Lavandula) is a perennial, small shrub, a popular medicinal plant, and an ornamental plant with positive effects on the human body. It is a kiss from the sunny Mediterranean to the exterior. Its advantages include not only rich flowering but also the fact that it tolerates extreme conditions, especially heat, wind, and drought. It grows compactly, but only if it is cut regularly. If you give it a cut and do not pay too much attention to it, it will surprise you with its natural beauty. Particularly narrow and tall flowers can be bluish, purple, but also white and pink. Thin silvery leaves, which are extremely pleasant to the touch, are also very pretty and in the time when lavender does not bloom, they are its decoration. The whole plant is soaked in essential oils and smells nice. Did you know there are several species of lavender? The narrow-leaved lavender (Lavandula angustifolia) is the most common in our area, however, the French lavender (Lavandula stoechas) can be found in Slovakia too. It is an attractive-looking and pretty flowering though more delicate species. The flowers are larger and more interesting, and it smells more intense. It is suitable for growing in containers in sunny places. However, in winter, it needs to stay inside.
Lavender flowers are an ornament on the plant and it is true that the older the plant, the more flowers. It is wonderful to see nicely grown lavender along sidewalks. However, you can also cut flowers and put them in vases or add them to vivid summer bouquets. Because they are durable, it is also worth drying them, later, you can use them to decorate the interior or prepare medicinal products. When collecting the flowers, it is necessary to cut completely bloomed flowers to prepare medicinal products, teas, and cosmetic use. However, if you want to preserve lavender flowers until winter, cut them sooner, about the time when the first two or three flowers bloom.
It is important to know that lavender is used in sunny modern and rural gardens, on the edge of flower beds, in gravel areas, by sidewalks, on rocks and flower walls, on slopes, and in front gardens. Lavender looks beautiful together with roses and flowering perennials in summer. It can also repel some rose pests, such as aphids. It excels in mixed herb plantings, many species can be grown separately in more spacious decorative pots on balconies and terraces. A low hedge of lavender also looks beautiful, especially during blooming. A prerequisite for growing lavender is a sunny and warm place. Lavender does not thrive in shady habitats with moist soil. It is suitable for light, permeable, sandy, and rather dry soil. It also tolerates heatstrokes.
The plant can also be planted in flowering conditions, immediately after purchase. However, remember to water it more regularly so that it roots well. Think about more frequent irrigation in plants that you grow in pots because the substrate in the container dries faster. Regular cutting is vital during cultivation, you have to make it twice a year, early in the spring and after flowering. In early spring, shorten the bushes by about half without cutting into the oldest wooden stem. During the summer cut, remove the blooming flowers and shape the shrubs slightly. You can also fertilize lavender at the beginning of the season with fertilizer for herbs. The plant does not usually suffer from diseases or pests. Text: Daniel Košťál, photo: Pixabay
Text: Daniel Košťál, photo: Pixabay