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Produce => Non Edible Plants => Topic started by: aquilegia on February 16, 2004, 15:24:09

Title: overgrown lavendar
Post by: aquilegia on February 16, 2004, 15:24:09
I don't think I cut my lavendar back enough last year - it's now really straggly at the ends and woody at the base. There are a few new shots at the base, but most of the new growth is on the end. I know it's too early to prune it now.

If I cut it back to the wood, will it still shoot from there? It's only two-three years old.

I do have a few cuttings I took last summer and I'll take some more with the trimmings.
Title: Re: overgrown lavendar
Post by: Palustris on February 16, 2004, 20:17:45
Sorry, but Lavender will NOT shoot from old wood like say roses do. Cur back stems by about half to leaving the new shoots you can see intact. Then if the new growth does not fill out enough to create a nice shape, take cuttings and start again. Lavender at best only lasts 3 or 4 years before becoming woody, so you should take cuttings every year to ensure a nice regular supply of young plants to put out.
Title: Re: overgrown lavendar
Post by: Garden Manager on February 18, 2004, 16:27:26
Erics advice is good, but I wouls like to add some more to it.

I have found that lavenders can be regenerated using a 'double prune' and a bit of luck method.

The first step is to prune back after flowering to the lowest live shoots/ leaves you can find. Here is where the luck comes in.  In a lot of cases this initial prune will encourage new shoots lower down towards the crown of the plant.

IF (and it is a big IF) these shoots develop you can then cut away the rest of the old wood as close as you can get to the new growth without damaging it.  You will find that the new shoots will grow away happily and flower that year. This second prune should be done in spring.

This method is a bit hit and miss and may not work with very old plants, but I have found that as long as som foliage is retained after the initial prune the plant is capable of regeneration. It is the removal of all foloiage which kills lavenders.

Not just lavenders either. I have used the same method to regenerate an overgrown Hebe in the past, another plant that can dislike being cut back into old wood.

Hope this helps

PS. Do take cuttings as insurance in case this does not work.  Works best with common english lavender.
Title: Re: overgrown lavendar
Post by: Mrs Ava on February 18, 2004, 16:58:23
I am sure that I once saw on TV someone, dont' remember who, digging up something like a lavender or rosemary or santallina and planting it deeper, right down past the stem sort of thing.  Then this would root and produce lots of lovely young shoots around the base so you could cut away all of the top.  Does this sound mad?
Title: Re: overgrown lavendar
Post by: Garden Manager on February 18, 2004, 17:06:53
No EJ you are quite right. I think it was Alan T on GW who showed us that trick. Idea is the stems produce roots which you can cut off and grow on. Its a form of layering (stool layering i think).

I read a fascinating way of rejuvinating pinks (dianthus) usinf a similar 'drop' method. Doesnt nessesarily produce new plants, but does bury the ugly woody stems older pinks get, making them look far nicer. Doesnt seem to do any harm either, though I'd recomend adding plenty of grit to improve drainage and prevent rotting.
Title: Re: overgrown lavendar
Post by: Doris_Pinks on February 18, 2004, 18:29:53
So what you are saying Richard, is if my Hubby plants me up to my neck, all my old bits will dissapear, and I will look nicer!! ;D Hmm maybe not one to suggest to him, he may think it a good idea! ;) Doris Pinks