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RE: Re: always something....lavender

I'm growing lavender in hot and humid weather...biggest problem is root rot
but I have put it in a well-drained raised bed with chicken grit as mulch. 
It is doing ok.

These are the notes I took at seminar on herbs from a woman who grows
lavender in Southern VA:

Cut lavenders back by a third in spring. 

 Lavenders are shrubs, not perennials. 

Put your lavender in pots so they don't drown and to avoid the clay, which
they don't like. And if you live where you can't leave terra cotta pots out
all winter, get those chimney flue liners - they look just like terra cotta
and are much tougher. You can generally find them at a builder's supply
place. If they can stand the temperature extremes in a chimney - a little
nasty weather shouldn't bother them. I have some of my lavenders in those
also! They're like miniature raised beds. 

Put several scoops of gravel in the bottom of the hole when you plant

Use well-drained beds with something called "crusher run", fines or "dirty
soil" that you often can get free from limestone quarries.  The material is
very alkaline with trace minerals that the Mediterranean herbs love.  The
fines are also used for mulch as the material also reflects the light and
heat.  Gardeners can also use chicken grit and lime for similar effect.  
Mediterranean Herbs need sun and lots of air...cut out the centers of
lavender, thyme, etc. to allow the air flow.  Prune these herbs three times
a year:  late March or early April to force new, robust growth; after
blooming, usually late June; and mid September as these herbs need about 6
weeks of new growth before the 1st hard freeze.   Sage plants can last 7-8
years if in sun, well-drained soil, and properly pruned.
For fertilizer use comfrey tea:  fill a 5 gallon container with comfrey
leaves (I guess I will need to set up a bed to grow these) and add water;
let set for 3 weeks; when the smell is gone; water herbs with the tea.
When planting, dig hole and put in water and sit the potted plant to be
planted separately in water for 1 hour.  Plant and don't water for three
days.  The plant may stress somewhat but it will be stronger once the roots
are established. 

> [Original Message]
> From: <TeichFlora@aol.com>
> To: <gardenchat@hort.net>
> Date: 8/30/2006 9:13:41 AM
> Subject: [CHAT] Re: always something....lavender
> Pam, sure it wasn't overwatering....with $300 water bills.....I'm just  
> wondering.  Lavender usually likes it hot and dry.  We can't grow  it
here at all, 
> even without any supplimental waterings it isn't dry  enough....not even
in a 
> pot. Just a thought, since you usually dont' have a  problem growing it 
> otherwise.
> Noreen
> zone 9
> Texas Gulf Coast
> In a message dated 8/29/2006 11:02:32 PM Central Standard Time,  
> gardenchat-owner@hort.net writes:
> Very  dry also unusually hot.  Those poor babies just couldn't take  it
> anymore.  The Spanish lavender handles the heat better but they  didn't
> any of those in stock last time I needed them, so I went w/ the  English.
> We'll see what they have in a few weeks from now when it's time to 
> them.  Lost 5 now so far.  2 are hanging in there.   Sigh.  Only good
news is
> I can strip the dead ones into the potpourri  'mixing' basket.
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