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How to Propagate Lavender for Endless Blooms

The second summer rolls around, I can’t get enough of lavender. This gorgeous ornamental is a garden staple, filling the air with a sweet fragrance and attracting your favourite pollinators. Get more of this purple perennial and propagate lavender cuttings from your garden today.

How to Propagate Lavender

Why would you want more lavender? Well, why wouldn’t you! It has the most delightful scent that is beloved in aromatherapy. It is known for its relaxing and calming properties, helping to ease stress and insomnia.

Beyond aromatherapy, it also has a delicate floral taste that I adore in cooking! Believe it or not, some people propagate lavender just for culinary purposes!

The plant itself is also a garden relish. It is extremely hardy and drought-resistant, making it a dreamy low maintenance plant. The bees adore lavender and I am always happy to invite more of them into my garden. And to top it off, they are dear AND rabbit resistant. Booya!

If you’re here already, I’m sure I don’t have to convince you how awesome lavender is. But I will never miss out on an opportunity to gush about one of my favourite plants. So without further ado, here is everything you need to know about how to propagate lavender.

bee on lavender

How to Grow Lavender from Cuttings

If you want lavender, you can easily get a whole garden full of the herb from a single plant. The best way to propagate lavender is by taking stem cuttings. The first step to getting a successful lavender cutting is by making the right selection.

To get the best yield possible, you want to only select cuttings from a healthy part of the plant, free of pests and diseases. I like to choose side-shoots from areas that have lots of foliage so they won’t be missed.

On the lavender plant, you will see softwood and hardwood. You want to trim softwood only. It is lighter in colour and more flexible than hardwood. This is the newer growth and it will root easier.

rows of lavender cuttings in purple containers

Take Your Cutting

Grab a sharp knife and disinfect it with soapy water and then rubbing alcohol. Cut a piece of softwood stem that has no flowers or buds on it. The cutting should be 3-4 inches long.

Once you have your cutting, immediately wrap it in a moist paper towel. Keep your lavender cutting cool until you are ready to plant it. Ideally, you should plant this cutting within 24 hours after taking it.

Plant Your Lavender Cutting

When you’re ready to plant your cutting in soil, remove all the leaves from the bottom two inches of the stem. You will also want to scrape the skin off the stem on one side of the bottom two inches.

You can place your cutting directly in soil or dip it in a rooting hormone like willow water first. However, lavender does root quite easily so don’t worry if you don’t have any rooting hormone on hand.

Poke your finger, a chopstick, or a pencil in the soil two inches deep. Place your stem in and pack the surrounding soil so the plant is standing straight up.

lavender field

Lavender Care

To make a mini-greenhouse for your lavender cutting, carefully place a zip-top bag over the cutting. Place your cutting in a warm area that is out of direct sunlight. Keep the cutting moist but release any condensation from the bag every couple of days so the leaves don’t get soggy.

Once there is new growth, remove the bag and reduce humidity. Let the soil dry completely between watering. You can also begin to fertilize the cutting at this stage to encourage quicker growth.

Once there are full, new leaves, your lavender is ready for transplant. Take it to its new permanent home!

bunches of dried lavender

 

Common Lavender Propagation Questions

Can You Root Lavender Cuttings in Water?

In my lavender propagation instructions, you probably noticed I mentioned placing the cutting directly in soil. However, this is not the only way you can root a lavender cutting.

Lavender will actually take easier to water propagation. BUT, the success rate for transplanting the cutting will be much lower. So, if you want to try propagating lavender with water, keep this in mind!

Once your lavender cutting has significant roots, about an inch long, you can pot your cuttings in soil.

how to propagate lavender

When Should I Take Lavender Cuttings?

The best time of year to propagate lavender is during its active growth season and when the plant is not currently flowering. Typically, this is during mid-summer. If you take your cutting too late in the summer or in the fall, it may not root as the plant could be going into dormancy.

Snip your cuttings in the morning when the air is nice and cool. This way your lavender plants aren’t under any further stress from heat.

How Long do Lavender Cuttings Take to Root?

Patience is hard when it comes to propagating! Luckily, lavender roots quite easily. You can expect to wait two to four weeks for softwood cuttings to take root.

Older hardwood cuttings will take much longer. I usually avoid snipping or pruning hardwood on a lavender plant altogether unless it is getting very unruly.

butterfly on lavender

That’s everything you need to know to propagate your lavender! Let me know in the comments below where you plan to grow your new lavender babies.

What to Do with Lavender

Now that you have plenty of new plant babies, you may be wondering what to do with it all. First, make sure you harvest lavender properly. Then, the sky’s the limit! Here are a few suggestions:

Comments

  1. Thank you for the article! In my experience Jan-March work the best (northern CA). Later is real tough.

    Reply
  2. Thanks for that great information! Also where did those pictures of lavender fields come from-would be great to take a tour. Thanks

    Reply
  3. Hello!
    I live in Northern California (Sacramento area) and there are several lavender varieties available. Do you you know which varieties are most fragrant? Which is best to use for this method of propagation?
    Garden therapy is real… I’ve experienced it in my life as well over the last five years. I just found your site and will be definitely be returning!
    Thank you for sharing your story and gardening insight!

    Reply

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