Lavender in vase

What is lavender

Lavender (lavender Angustifolia) is an evergreen shrub of the Lamiaceae family, which tends to grow in width rather than in height (where it does not exceed 50 cm). It is characterized by long and unbranched stems, from which leaves are born, opposite each other, of elongated and narrow shape. The small, calyx-shaped flowers arise at the top of the stem and gather in a compact spike-shaped inflorescence with a characteristic purple color. Lavender is a rustic plant, which prefers warm climates while resisting well even in the cold winter and which is well suited to growing in pots. Known since ancient times, lavender is rich in beneficial properties and essential oils, which make it useful not only for personal care or for the fragrance of the rooms, but also give it a sedative and calming function.

How to grow lavender in pots

To know when it is more convenient to start growing lavender in pots, you need to decide whether you prefer to start with seeds or a cutting. In the first case, sowing must be carried out in spring, making sure that the plant does not get cold. In the second case, just cut a 10 cm cutting in July or August and put it in a pot covering the roots. To guarantee the plant a drained and not excessively humid soil, which would risk rotting it, add a little sand to the soil and, in the lower part of the pot, some expanded clay balls that will avoid the dangerous stagnation of water. Place the pot in a sunny location and water sparingly. Be patient a little: it takes at least 3 years before it reaches its prosperity.

Period and correct lavender pruning process

Pruning lavender is necessary if you want to keep it healthy and compact. The correct period is at the end of flowering and we proceed by cutting about 2/3 of the flowering stems, in addition to the dry ears. Don’t overdo it with pruning because you risk seriously compromising growth and flowering. The cut will be made in the middle of the leaves, making sure to leave at least four buds on each cut stem and must be clean and oblique. If carried out with dull tools it could be frayed and it would facilitate the entry of parasites, fungi or other infections that would be lethal for your lavender. If in winter it had caught too cold, a more decisive pruning can be carried out in March: in this way it will strengthen and reduce the fatigue of flowering.

Potted Lavender: The different uses of lavender yesterday and today

Having potted lavender on your terrace will certainly be beneficial, because not only is it a powerful repellent against mosquitoes, but if dried and placed in drawers it will keep moths away. It is also useful to know that this plant was known in the past for the incredible qualities that are still exploited today. Used to perfume washing water, it was also known for its anti-inflammatory and antirheumatic qualities. The precious lavender essential oil has calming effects, promotes sleep and helps relieve ailments such as headaches and hypertension. A few drops added to the fumigations, will calm respiratory diseases such as bronchitis and colds, while used directly on the skin it will help healing from insect bites and infected wounds thanks to its anti-inflammatory function.

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