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Lavender stoecha - not sure whats wrong.

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  • parrotfeather*parrotfeather* Posts: 137
    Lavenders can be difficult to get right in pots.  It may be just me but it seems as though a lot of the brown in the picture is just the spent flowerheads and that the leaves themselves might be saved.  Try deadheading carefully with snips then cutting back (but not into old wood) the foliage a little. Ease the plant out of its pot and check what is happening at the roots...if they are black and smelly then you have root rot but otherwise it could just be that the plant has dried out.  Both of these can happen very easily if the compost is not suitable, as has been said by others, so try adding more grit and use a clay pot (with feet or on a couple of bricks or something to ensure it drains underneath).  Best of all would be to plant it out in full sun in a sandy soil, but that may not be possible.
  • sharanshrubssharanshrubs Maidenhead, UKPosts: 50
    edited 24 July
    So this is what is happening at the roots, doesnt look like root rot?

    @parrotfeather* @Dovefromabove


    The soil is dry.




  • DovefromaboveDovefromabove Central Norfolk UKPosts: 80,541
    edited 24 July
    It’s as I said … some of the multipurpose composts will not take up water once they’ve dried out .., it’s one of the reasons they’re not a good planting medium for mediterranean plants. 

    But that plant is still alive so I would soak the whole rootball in a container of water for an
    hour then let it drain and pot it up again … if you don’t have an unglazed pot at the moment use the sand one again but raise it up on pot feet or little blocks to help keep the drainage hole clear so the pot drains well. 

    The problem is that I would then advise not watering again until the compost feels dry … but the multipurpose compost may get ‘over-dry’ and not soak up moisture again  … 
    “I am not lost, for I know where I am. But however, where I am may be lost.” Winnie the Pooh







  • GardenerSuzeGardenerSuze I garden in South Notts on an improved clay soil Posts: 2,406
    @sharanshrubs I think I have a similar pot living in my shed [sorry to say] it is a lovely pot but just haven't used it this year. Is yours an RHS pot, if so the drainage should be fine.
    As said by @Dovefromabove once mulitpurpose gets over dry it can be impossible to get it wet again. I have mentioned salvias on your other thread. I hadn't appreciated the problems with moisture not escaping with glazed pots.
     I know you are wondering what to plant for next year. Something that is long flowering in full sun approx 3ft tall. Anyone any ideas please?
    The process of making a garden is like a river running through your life.
    The place stays the same but the water, even in the stillest days always moves.
    Monty Don.
  • sharanshrubssharanshrubs Maidenhead, UKPosts: 50
    I didnt know that multipurpose compost dries out - thank you.
    It is not an RHS pot. Its got one large drainage hole.
    Thank you all for your help. 
  • Punkdoc, I do know that.  I’m a trained Horticulturalist.  Lavenders are drought tolerant plants.  When grown in pots you only need to water them when the compost is dry. The posted picture is a lavender that has been watered too much.
  • GardenerSuzeGardenerSuze I garden in South Notts on an improved clay soil Posts: 2,406
    @rossdriscoll13 Just wondered if you could make a suggestion for plants in glazed pots. It would be good to give @sharanshrubs some ideas for future planting ideas. Thank you
    The process of making a garden is like a river running through your life.
    The place stays the same but the water, even in the stillest days always moves.
    Monty Don.
  • JennyJJennyJ DoncasterPosts: 7,056
    To me it just looks like a plant whose flowers have mostly gone over and which is starting to get woody at the base, which is normal for lavenders. In nature they'd gradually grow into gnarly, sprawly old specimens but we don't tend to like that look in gardens.
  • For plants that are to be grown permanently in pots you need to use a soil based compost such as John Innes No 3 not multi purpose compost.  You can re-wet compost by using a wetting agent such as WetnGro (others are available).  This breaks down the surface tension allowing the compost to soak up the water and the plants to be able to take up the water.  As for planting suggestions this would depend on what @sharanshrubs wanted.  Colour, height etc.

  • Joyce GoldenlilyJoyce Goldenlily Posts: 1,589
    So this is what is happening at the roots, doesnt look like root rot?

    @parrotfeather* @Dovefromabove


    The soil is dry.




    Your lavender is definitely still alive. Trim back to just above green foliage then as suggested, soak in a bucket of water overnight. Allow to drain thoroughly and then think about repotting into a larger pot.
    I have always found Lavendula stoecha very miffy to grow. I have never been able to keep it for more than a couple of years. I think it probably needs protection during the winter.
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