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How to propagate lavender

There are three methods of propagation. By cuttings, seed and layering.

Propagate Lavender By Cuttings

Cuttings are the easiest method and the chances of success are high. In addition, you are guaranteed that the new plant will be exactly the same as the parent plant.

The best method is to take a heel cutting in spring. This can also be done in autumn but the cutting will take longer to root. First fill the a pot(s) by filling with a sandy compost. Water it so the soil is damp but not dripping.

To take a heel cutting, identify a healthy looking shoot which is about 10cm (4in) long and pull it down and away from the main stem. You will end up with a shoot which has a "heel" of the main stem at its base. If the heel is a bit to long then trim it up a bit with a sharp knife.

Dip the "heel" in hormone rooting powder or solution, make a small hole in the compost with a pencil and place the cutting in the soil with the "heel" lowermost. About 3cm (1in) of the cutting should be below the soil. Gently firm the soil down around the cutting. Keep the cuttings in a light airy position out of direct sunlight keeping the soil just moist.

The lavender should show some signs of growth around 4 to 6 weeks later. If it outgrows the pot, pot into a larger one. The rooted cutting can be planted in its final position in early autumn.

Propagate Lavender By Seed
Lavender will not grow true to the parent type when grown from seed. For this reason we do not recommend this method of propagation.

In autumn when the seeds are ripe (they should be dry and black), collect them and place them in a compost filled pot (see cuttings above) and a very thin layer of compost scattered over them. Place them in a well-ventilated, warm and dark position. The seeds will take about six weeks to emerge. Then treat them as cuttings and plant in their final positions the next autumn.

Propagate Lavender By Layering

In early autumn select a long stem and gently bend it down to ground level. Peg it onto ground with a hoop shaped piece of wire and cover with 3cm (1in) of soil. The layer will produce growth the next spring. When this has happened, sever the stem from the parent plant and pot into soil as described for heel cuttings.

Transplant into its final position in early autumn. The plant will be an exact replica of the parent and the chances of success are high.




Date posted: September 07, 2011 - 02:41 pm
Message: Sorry to sound dumb, but what's a heel cutting. I have some very bushy lavender in the garden (in Argentina) with some dead flowers from last year and new flowers now it is spring. I want to do what's best for it.
Thank you for your help. Gina