Lavender Valley Acres

This is the time to plan your Lavender Garden
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This is the time to plan your Lavender Garden
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Why Lavender?
Lavender Valley Acres, 4th Annual Festival, 14 June, 2008

Lavender is an attractive hardy perennial that is presently growing its grayish foliage. It blooms during spring, summer, and fall. The lavender plants go dormant in winter to come back again in spring. These lavender plants survive our mild winter and little snow in Oklahoma. When lavender is in bloom, there is no place on earth that smells as sweet as your own garden.

Lavender is an herb rich in history and culture. Ancient cultures have prized lavender for its scent and healing properties. Ranging in colors from vivid sun-soaked indigo to a subtle violet-white. It evokes within all who encounter this plant a sense of calming and rest through its unmistakable aroma. It is one of the most beloved plants in our garden.

 

The best approach to planning your lavender garden is to start with pencil and graph paper. Map the entire yard or area that you plan on growing lavender. Be sure to include paths, ditches, and buildings that exist. Next, draw circles where you want to grow your lavender. We recommend that you plant your lavender plants about three feet apart from other plants or structures to allow room for you to walk or drive around the plants during harvesting and pruning season.

 

How We Grow Our Lavender:

Lavender is considered to grow best in direct sunlight.  The climate is different in Oklahoma from other places, so direct sunlight is not necessary. We have planted lavender in the shade of fruit trees and uneven ground such as the wall of a ditch and had success.

 

Lavender grows well in most soils, but well-drained soil is a must. The plants are tolerant of Oklahoma's droughts, snow and frost. The plants do not require fertilization and need very little water. In fact, our plants were affected by too much rain water in 2007.  We recommend that you water during the hottest summer months of August and September.  We use a heavy duty fabric around the plants to prevent the growth of weeds in and around the plants.

The following is a list of the varieties that we have had the most success in growing. These lavender plants are available for sale in our nursery in 4”, 6” and 1 gallon sizes.

1.     French

 

An evergreen perennial herb that has finely cut aromatic silver-gray foliage. 

Blooms spikes of fragrant purple flowers early in the season.

Grows 2-3 feet tall and can be brought inside during the extreme winter season.

2.     Grosso

 

An ornamental perennial herb that has dark purple flowers.

Blooms with fragrant dark purple flowers aromatic and evergreen foliage.

Grows 3-4 feet tall and has high lavender oil content.

3.     Hidcote  

 

An evergreen perennial herb with silver-gray foliage.

Blooms are a very dark purple that produces during the summer.

Grows 2-3 feet tall.

 

4.     Jean Davis

 

An ornamental perennial herb.

Blooms with fragrant light pink flowers and has a rich evergreen base.

Grows 1-2 feet tall.

5.     Munstead

 

 

A perennial herb that has silver-gray foliage that grows compact.

Blooms with fragrant light purple flowers during the summer.

Grows 2-3 feet tall.

 

6.     Provence

 

 

a perennial herb with fragrant light medium-purple flowers

Developed in France for the perfume industry.

Grows on 3-4 feet stems.

7.     Royal Velvet

 

 

An ornamental perennial herb.

Fragrant dark purple flowers with an evergreen plant-base.

Grows 1-2 feet tall.

8.     Spanish

 

 

A tender perennial herb.

Blooms early in the season with pine cone-shaped flowers with large purple top bracts.

Grows 2-3 feet tall.

9. Vera

A perennial herb.

Spikes of fragrant blue blooms will appear during the summer.

The plant will grow 3–4 feet tall.

 

10. White Spike.

 

An ornamental perennial herb.

It has evergreen foliage and has fragrant white flowers.

The plant will grow 3–4 feet tall

Keep in mind as the plants grow tall the base will also grow. If a plant grows 2-3 feet tall, the base of the plant will also grow as wide.

Pruning

Cut back the green growth one-third in the fall. Remove all the dead leaf matter and stringy twigs. The plants should be left free from clutter.

Harvesting

The scent is in the leaves, stems and flowers.  We recommend that you harvest during the early morning hours after the dew has evaporated. At this time, the oils are at their strongest and the heat of the sun has not drawn the essential oils out of the plant. Take the cut   stems and spread them loosely on a screen to dry. We dry our lavender hanging upside-down in bunches.

 

We conduct FREE Lavender garden tours and share with you our successful technique of growing lavender. Please call 580-588-2855 so we can be here to attend to your needs. For direction, please visit our website: