This is a very common question ….especially when there are now a few dozen named varieties on the market. About three years ago, I asked our top herb supplier his opinion about this , and he said to plant ‘HIDCOTE SUPERIOR’ . I took his advice, and planted my lavender border with it out at our farm. I think he was right ! From little 4″pots, these wonderful, bushy plants put on an amazing show every year. We cut them back lightly in late March, into greyish- green footstools of little appeal. Avoid chopping into thick wood, just do a buzz-cut over the entire plant. This way, all the future buds and stems of potential flower spikes are still there for July’s display of colour.
Lavender needs ,likes and demands good drainage. If you look closely at the above picture, you’ll notice,(on the left side), two paler mauve plants that don’t match. This is where two (out of fifty) of my original lavender plants died. It is the ‘low spot’ , where water sits all winter. Surely enough, a very clear message was delivered to me that the soil was soggy and waterlogged in this spot, and it killed two plants. I replaced the two dead lavenders with two more of the same name (from a different grower) and now see that they were mis-labelled. Rats !! I think these two are the variety called ‘MUNSTEAD’. They are beautiful, also, with looser and bigger flower spikes. The colour is very different (more ‘lavender’ than inky, dark blue) and I will take them out. To prevent another mis-match, I am going to transplant some of the tiny seedlings of my 48 other lavenders that are appearing in the gravel walkway ! They are easy to pull out, and have proven to be true to type already.
Lavender ‘HIDCOTE SUPERIOR’ edges part of my daylily hybridizing field in Langley, B.C.
It is easy to see why we moved from Vancouver…………..lots of space !