Sally Scalera

Brevard County Horticulture Extension Agent
3695 Lake Drive -- Cocoa FL 32926 -- 321-633-1702

Lavender will grow in Florida

June 24, 2000

The two best are French lavender, Lavandula dentata, and Spanish lavender, Lavandula stoechas. Both are perennial lavenders here, because they can tolerate our hot and humid summers.

For the best fragrance, English lavender, Lavandula angustifolia, would be the first choice. Normally, English lavender does not do well through the summers here and is usually grown as a winter annual, but I had some encouraging news for Nancy. One of our master gardeners has managed to grow English lavender for two years.

To grow English lavender, start amending the soil where you want to plant it. Use compost or manures. Master Gardener Dottie Tuggle uses peat moss and chicken manure to amend her soil, and she mulched the plants once they were in place. It is best to plant English lavender in the winter so it can become established during cooler weather. Hopefully, the plants will get off to a good start and be able to go through the summer with no problem. I have been growing French lavender in my yard for a couple of years, and I just planted some Spanish lavender.

Check with your local garden centers -- they have a great selection of herbs from which to choose.