The Q&A Archives: Spring Maintenance for Lavender

Question: I planted lavender this past summer.....I didn't do anything to it during the winter. We have it planted in good soil fertilized with manure and peat.... and somewhat protected by the deck. My question to you is what should I do with it in the spring? Should it be cut back? I keep getting different answers everytime I pose the question to nurseries. We have had a pretty much mild winter here in Ohio. I have the same question for hollyhocks, they are planted behind my lavender. Thanks. Carol Sinz Lowellville, OH

Answer: There's nothing you have to do in the spring except cut off any dead plant material. Don't cut it'll be removing the flower buds. Give it a dose of fertilizer this May to get it going. After it has flowered, cut off the spent blooms. This will encourage more flowers! Hollyhocks are short-lived perennials. They may live and blossom for several years if their stalks are cut off at their bases after the blossoms fade, but these old plants will rarely flower as freely as young ones started from seed each year.

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