One of the (many) things we love about the farm is experiencing the diversity of seasons. Whether it is Winter, Spring, Summer, or Fall, we get the gift of embracing each one with gusto. At Long Row Lavender we try to have our barn mirror each season through agriculture, home decor, and culinary faire. Our team’s goal is to highlight each season’s lovely features to the best of our ability. One of our favorite places to do this is in the field.
There is always something required of us in the field and in the barn. Specifically with each planting season, we look to what is ahead and to the fruit of our labors. We are consistently trying to balance the season we are living in, while also looking ahead to prepare for what is coming “next”. Each opportunity to plant, like each season, are completely different from one another. Because of this difference, the results of planting times fluctuate.
Lavender is native to the mediterranean. In planting it in the midwest, there is always risk. Risk that any number of environmental hazards could cause our plants permanent damage.With that being said, the two best planting seasons happen in the spring and fall. One of the most asked questions is “When is the best time to plant lavender?” The short answer is, spring or fall. However, while both are adequate, there is a difference in bloom time with each.
Last October our field was reoriented. With that massive change came fall planting. Half of our newly leveled field was sown with phenomenal lavender plants. We were hopeful that if our plants survived the winter, our patrons would be able to enjoy their summer blooms. Due to Missouri’s unpredictable winters, there is risk involved with planting in the fall. Ideally, lavender would like to be covered with snow and left alone. Since this is not Missouri’s normal weather pattern, it requires more labor on our end to protect the plants. In the past couple of years, we have taken the time to cover each of our rows with a frost blanket in order to provide some protection from loss due to ice and cold winds. It has helped! This year, thankfully, many of those baby plants survived our winter, and bloomed for us over the summer. We were delighted!
This past spring, the remainder of our field was sown with phenomenal lavender plants. Phenomenal lavender is a hybrid variety specifically bred to do well with our Missouri climate and soil. Planting this past spring meant that our “spring plants” would not have a chance to bloom as they were not in the ground as long as the lavenders that were planted in the fall. With that being said, we were encouraged by how healthy the plants looked even after being sown at different times and experiencing tremendous rainfall.
In the end, planting seasons are up to the at home gardener. Planting in the fall will give your lavender the best chance of blooming the following spring. However, remember to protect them over the winter from the cold winds and ice. This can be as easy as placing a rubber tote over the plant when the weather is predicted to be unusually harsh or covering it with a .5 oz frost blanket. Whether planting in the spring or fall, lavender can be a beautiful addition to your garden! Happy planting!!
- The LRL Team