There are so many varieties of Lavender, that it can be confusing to gardeners as to which ones are the best for their area. There are three primary species of lavender that are most widely planted: English Lavender, French Hybrid Lavender, and Spanish Lavender. Within each species, there are numerous varieties, each with beautiful variations in the shape, color, and size. Read on for recommendations based on your growing conditions and gardening needs.
Selecting Lavender For Your Climate & Humidity
In the cold, arid high desert of New Mexico, Lavender can be used in practically every planting. Thanks to the many cultivars of cold-hardy Lavenders available from High Country Gardens, you can enjoy the luxury of a wide selection. USDA Zone 6 climates and colder, reliable cold hardiness is required, so we recommend planting both English Lavender (Lavandula angustifolia) and French Hybrids to extend the season of color to stretch from late spring into late summer.
English and French hybrid Lavender tolerate heat and cold, but their enemy is high heat and high humidity. If you're living in a part of the country like Texas, Oklahoma, or the Southeastern US where the combination of extreme heat and humidity is common, stick with Spanish Lavender (Lavandula stoechas) as French hybrid and English Lavenders will not be long-lived. Look around and see what species are growing in your area, but don't be hesitant to experiment.
Selecting Lavender For Bloom Time
English Lavender blooms in late spring/early summer, while the French hybrids bloom mid-summer. Choose varieties from both these groups to have fragrant, bee-friendly flowers for most of the growing season.
If you chose twice-blooming English varieties, you'll enjoy an extra round of flowering in early fall. 'Gros Bleu', 'Sharon Roberts', and 'Buena Vista' are three reblooming varieties that we offer.
Selecting Lavender For Height, Color & Texture
When it comes to garden design, our Lavender selection offers a range of heights, colors, and textures to enhance any planting.
For rock gardens, container gardens, or small spaces, look for more compact varieties such as 'Wee One,' a dwarf cultivar exclusive to High Country Gardens, which grows to just 10" tall. It is the most compact Lavender cultivar in cultivation.
For larger spaces where you want to embrace the full shrub-like form of larger lavenders, look for 'Royal Velvet' English Lavender, or the Lavandula intermedia varieties such as 'Phenomenal' and 'Grosso.'
There is also a delightful range of colors and textures within the Lavender family. For deep, rich purple, look for our 'FlowerKisser® After Midnight English Lavender' with deep purple blooms. For cooler blue tones, look for 'Gros Bleu' or 'Hidcote Blue.' You can also add some variety to your Lavender collection with white blooms, thanks to 'FlowerKisser® Delft Blue and White' and 'Edelweiss'.
Lavender blooms can range from slender to bold - see photo above that compares the distinctive flower forms of four different Lavender cultivars.