Lavender likes it hot

© GPP / Downderry

Container gardens are mobile and can be creatively arranged, a different combination every time. Many plants thrive mightily in containers and bring flair to the balcony or patio that lends a Mediterranean feel. Due to their usually small volumes, plants that grow in pots dry out more rapidly and won’t necessarily make it through a hot, waterless weekend. Lavender much prefers dry to moist, relatively poor soil to rich, and is therefore ideal for balcony and terrace owners who don’t want to ply the watering can daily.

The Right Cut

Lavender blooms primarily in July, so it looks particularly impressive at this time of year. They bloom several weeks long and, if cut strategically, might bloom a second time in late summer. After blooming – mid-July – lavender should be cut back boldly with sharp sheers – by about a third. That means more than the flower stalks – be brave! Your lavender bush will stay compact and will send out new shoots this summer.

The Selection’s Never Been so Large

New varieties bloom from white, pink, light blue, violet, to dark purple. Whether in a single hue or as a mixture, lavender in pots and boxes have fine form. The silver gray foliage is suited to everything, but here, too, there are differences in growth habit and form. Some stay compact, others grow to over a meter high. The shape of their fragrant blossom varies, too, and is always a favorite with bees and butterflies. Currently there are almost 30 different – winter-hardy tested – lavenders that differ markedly in growth. It pays to read their descriptions closely, according to which location you’ve chosen. For containers, it’s worth getting the small-growing varieties such as ‘Imperial Gem,’ ‘Arctic Snow,’ ‘Melissa Lilac,’ and ‘Peter Pan.’ 

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