How Much Space do Lavenders Need to Grow?

How far apart to plant lavender

Plant lavenders 2-3 feet apart from one another and other plants. 2-3 feet of space is important so that lavenders do not have to compete for water, space, nutrients, or particularly sunlight, as the amount of sun will influence the strength of fragrance, amount of oil produced, and number of flowers on display.

An important factor to bear in mind is the differing sizes of lavender varieties at full maturity which can determine how far apart they should be planted. Keep scrolling down for a handy table on how far apart to plant the size-varying lavender cultivars…

Why Lavenders Need 2-3 Feet of Space

Lavenders will need to be planted at least 2-3 feet apart from each other or any other plants to display the best blooms, produce more oil, and stay healthy.

Lavenders can live when planted closer together however you will be compromising the health of the plant in terms of:

  • Sunlight. Lavenders prefer full sun (at least 6 hours). The more sun they receive the more they will bloom and produce oils. If you plant lavenders closer the 2 feet away from one another or near other plants they will cast shade on one another (particularly the larger varieties which can reach up to 40 inches in height) Sunlight is one of the most important growing conditions for lavender so you must plant them far enough apart to receive enough light.
  • Space for each lavender’s root system at maturity. Lavender roots have an average spread of around 10 inches or more with varieties such as ‘Hidcote Giant‘ needing 2-3 feet of space to establish properly. 2-3 feet of space will prevent each plant from competing for nutrients and water and ensure lavenders can establish their roots for better stability so that they can grow and bloom to their full potential.
  • Airflow. Another important factor that determines the placement of lavenders is airflow around the foliage. If you are planting lavender in a temperate, moist, or more humid climate then the amount of space you give each plant becomes even more important. Lavenders are adapted to the arid climate of the Mediterranean so placing them far apart in an area of your garden where there is an occasional breeze will help mitigate the effects of humidity. Lavender lives naturally in quick-draining sandy soils and are drought-tolerant plants that prefer a dry environment. If they are exposed to too much moisture they will develop fungal diseases such as root rot. Soil amended with sand, infrequent watering, and breezy conditions with plenty of space will help lavender grow and flower in more humid climates.

Spacing Different Lavender Varieties when Planting

Lavender plants can actually vary substantially in size with some giant specimens reaching more than 40 inches tall and the dwarf cultivars only grows to 18 inches…

Type of LavenderThe Size They Typically Grow to at Maturity (Height, Width)How Far Apart to Plant Each Lavender
Dwarf Lavender
e.g. ‘Hidcote Blue’, ‘Munstead’
16 inches x 18 inches (40 cm x 45 cm18 inches- 2 feet
Semi Dwarf Lavender e.g. ‘Pink Perfume’, ‘Hidcote’20-24 in (50-60 cm)2 -3 feet
Giant Lavenders e.g. ‘Hidcote Giant’, ‘Provence’, ‘Grosso’36-40 inches (90 – 100 cm)3 feet or more

Do bear in mind that lavenders will only grow to their full size and display the best blooms in optimal growing conditions.

The larger the plant grows the further apart you should space the lavender. Of course, this means you can get away with spacing dwarf lavenders much closer together so long as they do not deprive one another of sunlight.

The amount of sunlight each lavender receives per day will directly correlate with the strength of the lavender’s bloom and fragrance so they can be planted closer to each other as long as they do not shade one another. For this reason, dwarf lavenders are used when planting decorative low lavender hedges.

The giant varieties are used for ornamental purposes and for commercial lavender oil production. Just one of these 40 inches tall (1 m) beasts can exude a delightful fragrance that travels throughout the garden, in the summer.

It is best to plant varieties like, ‘Hidcote Giant’ at least three feet away from one another to really get the best fragrance and blooms from the plant.

Three feet is a good distance to keep large lavenders away from other large plants, walls, fences, or any other garden feature that may hinder airflow or increase humidity. The less humidity and more breeze around the lavender the more resistant it will be to fungal disease.

How Far to Space Lavenders in Pots or Raised Beds

Similar guidelines apply when deciding how far apart to space lavenders in pots or raised beds, with 2 feet being acceptable for smaller lavenders and 3 feet for larger varieties.

However, you can get away with placing lavenders closer together if they are in pots as the ventilation tends to be better than if they were planted into the ground.

Lavender pots that are placed on patios or gravel are less exposed to the threat of damp soil (as pots and raised beds have more favorable drainage) and there are likely going to be fewer immediate sources of water vapor (such as wet soil) that can increase humidity or create moist conditions around the lavender’s foliage.

Therefore as long as each plant is receiving enough light you will be able to position potted lavenders closer together. Of course, with pots, you can adjust them and move them further apart if they are unhappy with their location.

For more information on how easy it is, read my article: growing lavenders in pots.

Raised beds are also a great way to avoid problems with water-retaining soil or boggy low lying areas. If your garden is relatively open with a frequent breeze then you shouldn’t have a problem planting lavenders a little closer together.

If you think the lavenders aren’t growing as well as they should then you can transplant the lavenders so that they’re further apart, into pots or elsewhere in the garden. Transplanting lavenders is best done in early spring.

See my guide on how to transplant lavenders for all the best practices and the steps you should take to mitigate transplant shock.

Key Takeaways:

  • Plant lavenders 2-3 feet away from each other.
  • Dwarf varieties can be planted closer together (18 inches – 2 feet) and larger varieties grow and bloom best when planted 3 feet apart.
  • Spacing lavenders 2-3 feet apart will prevent each plant from competing for light, water, nutrients, space, and airflow so each plant can produce the most flowers and fragrant aromas.
  • Potted plants and lavenders in raised beds can be spaced slightly closer together due to the potential for increased airflow and favorable drainage as long as they are not casting shade on one another as lavenders need full sun.
  • The more humid the climate the further apart you should plant lavenders. This advice also applies to temperate climates.
  • Spacing lavenders at least 2-3 from each other will improve airflow and therefore decrease the likelihood of fungal disease affecting your plants.
  • Consider, how easy it is for you to get to your lavenders when deciding where to place them, as lavenders will require pruning at least once per year to slow down the development of wood from the base and extend their life. Read my article on why lavender plants become woody for more advice on this.
  • Spacing lavenders correctly will increase the health of the plant and encourage more blooms, oils, and aromas.

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