Pruning Lavender

Pruninng lavender is an essential part of keeping the plant healthy. The purple blooms are striking, and the wonderful fragrance makes these plants perfect near a walk or seating area. Maintaining your lavender will make sure you can enjoy these plants for many years to come.

Keep Your Lavender Productive And Healthy

Pruning your lavender not only helps it to maintain a neat appearance, regularly trimming your plants will promote strong root growth, extend the plant's bloom season and help your plants resist disease. Here's how to maintain your lavender plants:

  • Stay sharp. Whether you prune your lavender with hand shears or a mechanical hedge trimmer (handy for larger lavender beds) the blades of your tools should be sharp. Dull blades break and crush stems instead of cutting them. These damaged stems weaken the plant and can lead to disease or even death. Sharp blades create a clean cut that will heal quickly.
  • Deadhead as needed. Removing spent blooms as they fade (called deadheading) will promote the growth of new blooms during the growing season. When removing blooms-either for deadheading or use in your home-be sure to remove only the bloom and its stem. Leave the growth below the flower stems alone until it's time to prune.
  • Know when to prune. Prune your lavender in the early spring, when the first green shoots begin to appear. Pruning your plants before they begin to develop leaves will limit their growth and bloom production for the season.
  • How much? Generally, you'll want to cut back about a third of the growth of your lavender plant. Be careful, however, not to cut all the way back to the bare woody parts of your plants. Lavender can't generate new growth on these woody stems and will not recover from a severe cutting.
  • Be diligent. Regular pruning of your lavender plants will help them maintain their shape and size. Plants that are not properly pruned will quickly grow woody stems that can't readily be pruned back. Show your lavender that you're the boss!
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