When to prune lavender for plant to ‘live longer and bloom profusely’, claim gardeners

An annual pruning is considered to be an important step for long-lasting lavender plants. 

Without it, they grow a large, lanky, woody base that can split open. It not only makes it look bad but shortens the plant’s lifespan too.

Unsure of whether or not they should prune lavender now, one woman took to the Gardening UK Facebook page to ask for some advice.

Alongside posting a picture of her tired-looking lavender plant, Jill Collins asked: “Am I too late to prune lavender? If not, how should I do it?”

Fellow group members agreed that the main bulk of lavender pruning should be left until spring, but a light prune now is fine.

Gerard assured: “Lightly prune off the old flowers and leave it till next spring when all danger of hard frost is gone, and then prune again.”

Jane Coster wrote: “I never cut my lavender back until spring, and it has always been good. It’s the best time to do it.”

Jessica Evans said: “I would probably wait until early spring just before new growth appears. 

“Cut about two-thirds of the old growth and then again after flowering next year to keep a busy and compact plant. 

“Just don’t cut it all the way back to the old wood. Leave some of the green growth.”

Rosa Young replied: “Definitely wait now until all spring frosts are over, then when you prune it the plant will live longer and bloom profusely.”

Anne Lewis said: “When you do prune lavender in spring, cut back to the woody stem but don’t cut into the woody part.”

Pam Rhodes claimed: “I was always told not to prune after the beginning of September.”

It’s not just gardening enthusiasts that suggest pruning be left until spring, but also the experts at Seafoam Lavender agree.

The lavender experts said: “Prune lavender only in the spring, while the plant is still in winter dormancy or once green growth is noticed, but prior to bud formation.”

If possible for gardeners, they should aim to prune lavender during the month of May.

The experts urged: “Do not prune lavender in autumn in northern climates, as this may kill the plant.”

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