I am well aware that lavender by and large does not tolerate wet feet, as many of them have died in our clay soil. However, in preparation for the future and looking for business opportunities lavender is a rising business in the Commonwealth of Kentucky, and I was wondering if anyone was aware of any specific cultivars of lavender that tolerate heavy clay soils which we have on this side of Kentucky. I can make raised mounds, and amend the soil to better drain over time. However, starting out with a more tolerant cultivar would be much more ideal. Thoughts/experience?
I've been trying to grow lavender for years here in Arkansas.
Last year I bought seed for four varieties and had almost perfect germination. I had over one hundred plants potted up carefully, in a mix of sand, limestone crushed rock and some compost/soil. It took all summer, but gradually, all but six have died. Those six are a Munstead variety and seem to be wintering over in pots outdoors just fine. ONE might be an english lavender.
I think it's the humidity for most varieties because even with well drained, proper PH soil the leaves will darken and die when there is too much rain or humidity. I've had even less luck if I try to plant in the ground here. I've tried bought plants and many packets of seed...almost obsessive....it's such a wonderful plant.
The varieties I planted last spring were munstead, english, french and czech, a four pkt. offer from Richter's I think. Nothing wrong with the seed or germination, just our humidity. The french variety was the most delicate and the english not far behind.
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Sorry for the late reply. Yeah, maybe raised beds are a way to go, but sucks because on the Eastern side of the state people are growing them in the ground for acres. I am sure the likelihood that there are tolerant lavender cultivars is high, but desire of the public and industry to make them available is another thing. As far as humidity I did read that Spanish lavender is very tolerant, but from what I seen it too requires a nice well drained soil.
I have not tried it yet, but there is a new variety of Lavender called Phenomenal. You cannot get seed, only plants. It looks to be a much more forgiving cultivar, and the wands look to be much bigger than other lavenders. Hope this helps!
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