It is a given that most gardeners want to grow lavender for its romance, beauty, and scent. Unfortunately a lot of people get frustrated with the plant when it dies after a season or two. The main culprit that will kill a lavender plant is heat and humidity. But there is one variety that has been developed that will tolerate and thrive under those conditions – Phenomenal!
Phenomenal Lavender has hit the market by storm and I have grown it it now for two years. Supposedly more forgiving of heat and humidity which hits me hard in Maryland, this plant was chosen from thousands of lavenders for its amazing performance and resistance to root and foliar problems that tend to hit other lavenders. Patented by Lloyd and Candy Traven of Peacetree Farm, a wholesale greenhouse, Phenomenal is a great new introduction. A high oil content makes this plant an asset in the kitchen and bath. There is even a Facebook page for this variety! It was also named a ‘Must-Grow Perennial’ for 2013 by Better Homes & Gardens. Phenomenal sailed through our record-breaking winter temperatures for me without a hitch.
Keep in mind that lavender is native to Mediterranean climates with a dry, rocky, and sunny climate, and you will get some clues on how to treat this versatile perennial. I visited a lavender farm in Oregon and saw beautiful fields of different varieties being grown side by side.
There are several pointers in keeping your lavender plants healthier and producing those beautiful aromatic wand-like flowers.
Hardy to zone 5, lavender’s worst enemy is wet-think poor drainage, high humidity, and frequent rains
No need to fertilize this plant; Think lean and mean!
Drought resistant yes! But don’t forget to water new transplants until rooted in
Make sure there is plenty of air circulation between plants so that moisture and dampness is not a problem
Apply mulch in areas where the ground freezes and thaws throughout the winter
In spring, a little pruning is in order; Cut back a third of the plant for better form when you see new green growth at the base of the plant
Always, always plant in full sun