Wait, wait, hold on...it's still way too early to be planting or sourcing your lavender plants. It is however the perfect time to be planning out your landscape, use these sunny days to look at your plot while the weeds still haven't overtaken empty spaces in the yard or the hillsides typically feared by riding mowers in the summer.
Timing is Everything
First let's help sink this in more on the proper time in our local area to plant lavender, the absolute earliest time to safely plant direct to ground is two weeks following our last frost. We have dialed our earliest planting days down to the second week of May, however the best time has seemed to be the end of May. This still gives you plenty of time for the lavender to receive enough water and get some decent root growth before the summer months. Remember in Western Washington April showers, bring May showers, bring part of June showers...
Picking the Location
Find an area that you want low maintenance plants that is in full sun. Typically the areas that your grass normally dies or nothing else grows are perfect. If you have an irrigated yard avoid areas that are irrigated daily, turn off the circuit to that area or shunt the supply to that area, you wont need it and it can actually stunt your plant's growth or even kill them.
Preparing the Area
The soil should ideally land around 6-8, for us local to the Big Bottom, we most likely will need to add some lime. Soil modification takes time, throw the lime down now to get a jump.
To avoid clearing grasses and weeds inside the plants, use a good ground cover. We now sell it too! Use a quality ground cover, remember those plants will live 10-12 years! Most felt covers will not last and your maintenance will slowly pick up to keep the area looking nice.
Lavender loves heat, consider a washed drain rock as a decorative dressing in the area, avoid bark-this holds moisture and does not promote good air circulation at the bases of the plants.
Plan for spacing 36" for the larger varieties, or 18" for smaller. They will fill together after about 3 years.
We will cover planting as the time approaches, for now...doing the above steps will get you all set up for an easy planting day with all the hard work done already! But just as a heads up for color planning...these are the exciting varieties we will have this year at the farm, most are edible (in bold)!