Keeping Lavenders in Shape
The aromatic scent of lavender at the height of summer is iconic. Lavender attracts bees and butterflies and its soft mounds add structure to sunny borders. While lavender plants may live for many years, they can lose their shape very quickly and become unsightly if not managed carefully. With regular attention, however, they last about seven years before they need to be replaced.
The lavenders (Lavandula x intermedia ‘Alba’, Lavandula x chaytorae ‘Richard Gray’) in our West Garden were planted in 2010 which means that they are getting close to their “sell by date”. However, a diligent pruning regime means that most are still looking good: The plants get clipped lightly in the spring when they have put on their first growth, helping to preserve the desired mounded shape. It is very important not to cut into the wood!
After they are spent, the flowering stems are cut off in early August to reshape the plants. Again, it is essential to avoid cutting into the woody centre of the plants.