Lavender is a beautiful perennial shrub known for its fragrant flowers and amazing color. The plant is relatively easy to grow, making it a favorite among many gardeners. However, one thing that puzzles many lavender growers is when and how to harvest it. Harvesting lavender at the right time is crucial to ensure that you get the best yield and quality of the plant. In this article, we will explore the best time to harvest phenomenal lavender and how to do it correctly.
When to harvest phenomenal lavender
Knowing when to harvest your lavender is essential to ensuring that you get the best yield and quality. The ideal time to harvest phenomenal lavender is during the early morning hours when the flowers are at their most fragrant. You should plan your harvest when about one-third of the flower heads on the blossom spikes have opened up. The buds that have not yet opened will dry up and fall off if you leave them too long.
When harvesting phenomenal lavender, you need some essential tools. These include a sharp pair of pruning shears or scissors, a rubber band or string, and a basket or tray to place the cut lavender. All these tools should be clean to avoid introducing bacteria or fungi that can contaminate the plant.
1. Cut off the stem below the flowers using a sharp pair of pruning shears or scissors.
2. Cut several stems at once and gather them into a bunch with a rubber band or string.
3. Hang the bunches upside down in a warm, dry, and well-ventilated area.
Lavender buds are ready for harvesting when the flowers have reached their peak color but are not yet fully open. Depending on your location, this harvest season will fall between July and September.
Lavender should be pruned in the early spring to shape it and promote new growth. Make sure to cut just above the first set of leaves to prevent rotting of the stem.
It is advisable to deadhead the flowers as soon as they start to fade. Deadheading stimulates new growth and prolongs the flowering season.
Drying phenomenal Lavender
The primary use for harvested lavender is usually for its fragrance. It is essential to dry your lavender correctly to maintain its fragrance and preserve its color.
Hang the bunches upside down in a warm, dry, and well-ventilated area away from direct sunlight. Leave the bunches for two to four weeks before taking them down. Strip the buds from the stem and store the dry buds in a glass jar in a cool, dark place.
Drying in a dehydrator
If you have a dehydrator, you can use it to dry your lavender. Spread the flowers in a single layer on the dehydrator’s trays and set the temperature to 90-100 degrees Fahrenheit. It takes about three to four hours to dry the flowers fully. Store the dry buds in a glass jar in a cool, dark place.
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In conclusion, harvesting phenomenal lavender is not a daunting task. Correct timing when harvesting and drying is crucial in ensuring that you get the best yield and quality of your plant. Always use clean tools when pruning and harvesting, and store your lavender in a cool, dark place. Remember to harvest your lavender early in the day when the flowers are most fragrant, and about one-third of the flower heads have opened up to get the best quality.
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Last update 2023-06-03. Price and product availability may change.