Should You Deadhead Your Lavender Plants?
Deadheading is one of those terms that become very obvious when placed within its proper context. This is because it means the removal of either dead or soon-to-be-dead flowers on plants. A practice that sees a fair amount of use because it provides some serious benefits for the look of the plants. After all, the fading of the flowers means that the plant is focusing on the seeds. Deadheading makes it possible to keep the plant flowering throughout the growing season.
Should You Deadhead Your Lavender Plants?
Interested individuals can do what they want when it comes to deadheading their lavender plants. This is because it isn’t necessary for them to do so. Instead, everything depends on what they want from their lavender plants as well as the rest of their gardening space. There are a couple of main reasons why people would want to deadhead their lavender plants. For starters, if they are concerned about their lavender plants spreading their seeds, this is one of the easiest ways to prevent their lavender plants from doing so. Of course, the other reason would be maintaining the appearance of the lavender plants. In part, this is because dead and soon-to-be-dead flowers aren’t exactly appealing to the eyes, meaning that removing them can do a lot to improve the overall look of a gardening space. However, it is also possible that deadheading will encourage the lavender plants to bloom again and again because it interrupts their reproduction cycle. Please note that deadheading won’t cause every single kind of lavender plant to re-bloom, though the other reasons for deadheading will remain very relevant for those. As for the deadheading itself, interested individuals should use a sharp, sanitized pair of gardening shears for the job. Furthermore, they shouldn’t restrict themselves to the petals of the dead or soon-to-be-dead flowers. Instead, interested individuals should be removing the whole thing, which means targeting the base of the stem that supports the flower.
It Is an Entire Genus
Plant names can be very inexact. To name an example, consider how lavender can refer to the entire genus Lavandula, which includes 47 species of flowering plants in the family Lamiaceae. It isn’t 100 percent clear how the genus Lavandula became the genus Lavandula. One line of thinking says that the name comes from the Latin lavare meaning “to wash,” which is a clear reference to how these plants have been used over time. Another line of thinking says that the name comes from the Latin livere meaning “blueish,” which is presumably a reference to their color.
There Is a True Lavender
Some people might wonder whether there is a true lavender or not. If so, the answer is “Yes.” There is a lavender plant called either lavender, true lavender, English lavender, or even Old English lavender, with the last two names being somewhat misleading because this lavender plant is native to the Mediterranean world. One could point out that what is now England was once a part of the Roman Empire, meaning that it had strong connections to the Mediterranean world. However, said region was a peripheral part of the Roman Empire, meaning that this is something of a stretch. Indeed, true lavender continues to do the best in places with dry summers and wet winters similar to those of its native Mediterranean climates. In any case, this lavender plant is notable because it is the single most popular lavender plant in the entire world, being used for cooking, medicine, ornamentation, and so on and so forth. As such, it has numerous cultivars.
There Are Other Common Lavenders As Well
It would be convenient if true lavender was the one lavender plant that saw much use. Unfortunately, that is very much not the case because there are a number of other lavender plants that see widespread cultivation. Confusingly, not one but two of these lavender plants can be called French lavender. Lavandula stoechas is called topped lavender in the United States but French lavender in the United Kingdom. Similarly, Lavandula dentata is called either fringed lavender or French lavender.
Lavender Plants Are Very Widespread
As a whole, the genus Lavandula is native to much of the Old World. This can be seen in how lavender plants grew in places that included but were not limited to the Canary Islands, Europe, North Africa, Eastern Africa, and India. In modern times, lavender plants have become even more widespread, particularly since they are so popular as ornamental plants. Thanks to that, lavender plants sometimes make their way out into the wild. Sometimes, this is harmless. Other times, well, suffice to say that Lavadula stoechas is considered to be an invasive species in Australia.
Lavender Is a Very Popular Essential Oil
One of the most common uses for lavender plants would be the production of essential oil. Chances are good that interested individuals have seen the effects of this interest for themselves. After all, there is a very wide range of consumer products that are either lavender-scented or use lavender in some other way. Generally speaking, this lavender oil comes from true lavender. However, it is interesting to note that the hybrids of the true lavender with Lavandula latifolia see plenty of use as well.
Lavender Sees a Lot of Culinary Use As Well
There are some plants that can be used to produce essential oil but are problematic for humans when consumed. However, true lavender isn’t one of them because it sees a lot of culinary uses as well. For example, the dried buds are sometimes used for strengthening either sweet or savory tastes. Similarly, the dried buds are sometimes put in sugar so that something of their smell as well as their essential oils can be carried over. After which, the sugar is used for baking. On top of this, it is interesting to note that lavender plants see a lot of use in the production of monofloral honey, which has a much more distinctive flavor because it is made using the nectar of a single flower for the most part rather than a wide range of nectar from a wide range of flowers.