Growing lavender in pots is a great way to add color and fragrance to your home. The plants can be grown indoors, in containers, or even hanging baskets. This blog post will walk you through the steps you need to know to grow beautiful full containers of lavender that you can enjoy year-round. To grow lavender in pots takes a bit of know-how to get it right, but we have you covered with all the tips you need.
Can you grow lavender in a pot?
Lavender can grow well in containers if a few right conditions are provided. The first need is to ensure that the pot has good drainage. The second thing you need for your lavender to grow well in pots is light & water at the proper levels. Provide these few things and your lavender plants will grow well.
Make Sure you Purchase the Correct Type of Pot
It would be best to look for pots larger than 12 inches for a showy display, but you do not need deep pots. For example, 6-8 inches deep is adequate for lavender’s short root system.
You only need to plant one lavender plant per 1 square foot of potting space.
Terracotta pots make excellent containers for planting lavender. The pots help wick away excess moisture and provide the plant with a sturdy vessel to grow.
Be Sure to Use Good Well-draining Potting Soil
For containers, use about six inches deep of good quality garden soil. Potted lavender plants prefer slightly alkaline soil pH levels.
Note: It’s a good rule of thumb not to pack down your soil too hard when planting because it can cause problems later. Potted lavender plants can become “root bound,” stunting growth and stressing the plant. Stressed plants tend to succumb to diseases and pests far more than healthy plants.
Any well-draining type of soil is suitable for planting lavender flowers.
One great choice for soil is a cactus or succulent mix, which typically contains a mixture of sand, peat moss, organic matter, and perlite. These three ingredients are necessary because they all provide different benefits that make them perfect for growing outdoor and indoor lavender plants in containers.
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Gather your Gloves, Spade, Trowel, and Plant Markers
In addition to choosing your soil, you’ll also want some garden stakes or stones (to weigh down the pots) and plenty of good quality compost so you can start fertilizing from day one!
You may even consider adding in a few slow-release organic fertilizer pellets. Here are a few extras you may want to consider:
- Garden gloves
- Plant Markers
Or check out our post on all the must indoor or outdoor gardening tools!
Choose Lavender Varieties that Grow Well in Containers
Some of the most popular varieties of lavender for pots are:
- English Lavender (lavandula angustifolia)
- Grosso lavender
- Provence (also called French lavender) – this is the best lavender for scent.
- Spanish lavender (Lavandula stoechas)
Every type of lavender has its characteristics and benefits, but they’re all great plants to grow in containers.
The best way is to choose based on color preference. For example, if you like purple flowers, the “Grosso” variety will a good choice because it’s a deep lilac shade and has lovely green foliage. On the other hand, if you want something more blueish or greenish, get an “English Lavender.” And some people love the scent of Provence lavender. There are many fragrant varieties, but these three types are the most popular for containers.
You can also plant lavender around your vegetable and herb garden to add a bit of color and help attract pollinators.
Learn More: Did you know that lavender is edible? Check out this guide to edible flowers. You probably have some growing in your garden right now!
Start your Lavender Seeds Indoors 4-6 Weeks Before the Last Frost
If you want to start lavender from the source, you need the freshest seeds possible. You can find them at your local nursery or on a reputable website like Amazon.
To grow lavender flowers from seed, you’ll need to prepare your seeds in early spring. First, fill your seed tray or small pots with potting soil and then sow the seeds on the top. Next, press them into the ground gently and then sprinkle with potting mixture.
Lavender seedlings require lots of light to germinate, so use a sunny window or grow lights.
Water the seeds daily and keep them moist at all times, but don’t overwater!
Then wait for about four weeks before planting outside or moving on to your containers.
You will seed new growth for your lavender seedlings in about 12-20 days from planting the seeds.
Or Propgate Established Plants by Taking Cuttings.
If you want to take cuttings from your lavender plant, you need a few inches of soft stem. Cut the stems off below where it meets the bottom leaves and place them in a container or jar filled with water.
Put the lid on loosely so that some air can escape without letting any bugs get into it.
Keep these slips watered regularly until they start sprouting roots. Once the cuttings have grown roots at least 2 inches long, go ahead and plant on in your containers. Remember, each potted lavender plant will require at minimum 1 square foot of space to ensure good air circulation.
Once established in its new potting mix, keep well watered and fertilized as needed.
Provide Your Lavender Pots with at Least 8-10 Hours of Direct Sunlight
Potted lavender will require full sun so be sure to place the container where sunlight will be abundant.
For indoor lavender plants, it’s best to place them in the sunniest southern facing window or under a grow light.
For outdoors, be sure to add them to any spaces in your yard that receive at least 8-10 hours of sun.
Water Your Lavender Plants Every 2-3 Weeks in Hot Weather.
Overwatering is one of the leading causes of failure when growing lavender! So it’s best if you check the soil moisture regularly.
The key to watering your plants is moderation: make sure they don’t get too dry or overwatered (you’ll know when it’s time to water again because there will be roots coming out of the drainage holes in the bottom!) The general rule of thumb is once every two weeks.
Yellowing leaves can be a sign of overwatering.
Excess water should easily flow out the bottom of your containers.
Address Diseases and Pests as soon as Possible
Lavender can be attacked by a fungal infection like leaf spot, bacterial rot, crown rot, and root rot. As well as bacterial diseases like wilt and fusarium. The best method of dealing with these diseases is prevention. Please ensure the container where you plant your lavender is well-draining; do not overwater, and keep the top of the soil dry by covering it in pebbles or mulch.
Aphids, nematodes, root-knot, thrips, and whitefly can all be a challenge when growing lavender, so be sure to deal with pests right away. Most problems that attack lavender can be controlled with insecticidal soap.
Controlling diseases and pests immediately will help you grow healthy, productive plants.
Don’t Forget to Harvest Your Lavender Flowers
Cut freshly bloomed lavender stems in late summer with clean gardening shears or sharp, sanitized scissors. It will help to cut the stem close to the bottom of the lowest branch.
Make sure to cut at least an inch off the soil’s top. This cutting method helps prevent bugs and mold from getting on your lavender plant.
You can strip away the lavender buds and use them fresh in baking (so long as You used no pesticides during their growth cycle)
You can also dry your lavender in potpourri, displays, and fragrance bags or dry it in the kitchen. In addition, lavender makes a beautiful cut flower for vases.
Learn More: I often dry my lavender in my dehydrator; you can tie a bundle and hang it upside down in a dry, warm spot. We have an entire guide dedicated to drying lavender you should bookmark for when it’s time to harvest your own lavender.
Take Care of your Container Grown Lavender in Cold Winters
Bring your container-grown lavender indoors in cold climates when winter has a hard freeze. In milder climates, mulch the top of the soil well and place the containers in a sheltered location.
Protecting your lavender plants over winter will ensure your pots are long-lasting. For more information, check out our full guide to winterizing lavender.
A quick tip: White potted lavender looks stunning in a nighttime garden!
Use Dried Lavender Around the Home
Having fresh lavender around the home is lovely for drying, adding to cooking, crafts, or just hanging in your closet to freshen it up! Or check out our full post on 15 ways to use lavender around the home.
Lavender also makes a beautiful addition to your bee garden, providing nectar for bees in the early morning hours. It’s kind of like giving the wee bees a coffee to get on with their day.
Related: We love to dry flowers and have a very popular post dedicated to the best methods for drying all kinds of flowers and a secondary post on how to care for dried flowers to keep them looking their best.
Store your Lavender for Long Term use with Airtight Containers
Store dried lavender by putting it into an airtight container filled with cotton balls. Keep this stored away from light and heat, which will make it lose its scent more quickly than if left exposed to open air.
Some interesting facts about lavender:
- Lavender essential oils were used as a scent for perfume in ancient Rome.
- It is the most popular essential oil and can be found at many grocery stores.
- The smell of lavender is relaxing, and studies have shown it to be mildly effective for insomnia and anxiety.
- There are over 20 types of lavender!
- Lavender is an edible perennial herb. It’s delicious used in baking for custards, cookies, and even cakes! Lavender is popular in dishes from France.
- Lavender is one of the most used scents in bath and body products. From bath salts to soap, it’s the fragrance you can most easily find.
Growing Lavender In pots – Not as Hard as You Thought!
Growing lavender in pots may seem challenging, but it’s easier than you think with these easy steps. There will be no need for fear when growing lavender if you follow these instructions. Be sure to give yourself tie to enjoy this excellent plant and all its wonderful uses.
We Have More Flower Gardening Posts You Might Find Interesting
A few more gardening posts for my fellow flower gardeners:
- Moonlight Plants – Flowers of White for Your Night-Time Garden.
- The 12 Fastest-Growing Flowers: A Full Guide With Bloom Times!
- How to Grow Sunflowers: Everything You Need to Know
- Natural Dye from Flowers: A Dye Garden Plant List
- Flowers that Grow in the Shade: The 14 Best Options
- See the complete list of lavender companion plants.
- How To Make Potpourri Using Dry Flowers And Herbs
- Proper Care for Tradescantia Plants (inch plants)
- The Best Flowers to Grow in Pots
- The Pros and Cons of Square Foot Gardening