Lavender is a beautiful plant that brings a gorgeous purple color to your garden. You can also plant it indoors, which is a fantastic way for you to make the most of its various benefits, such as its calming properties. But, how do you grow lavender plants indoors?
You can grow lavender plants indoors by ensuring they get a lot of sun, water every second week, and a well-draining potting mix. They don’t require much to grow healthily.
In this article, we’ll explore how to grow lavender indoors. We’ll look at why lavender is a great low-maintenance plant to grow and its health benefits. We’ll also feature tips on how to grow lavender successfully.
Why Should You Grow a Lavender Plant Indoors?
There are good reasons why you should grow lavender indoors, such as that it grows very well in containers and pots. It’s also a low-maintenance plant that doesn’t require much in terms of care. And, of course, lavender brings a delicious scent to your home.
Lavender is a popular plant for use in wellness and health. Here are some great things you can take advantage of by planting lavender in your home
- Culinary lavender can be used in dishes to replace salt—it can be blended with spices
- It promotes digestive health—the lavender plant’s essential oils are a remedy for stomach pain, colon inflammation, diarrhea, and colitis
- Lavender has an earthy smell that’s known for its calming effects—a study found that the scent of lavender can relieve stress and enhance sleep
You can use fresh lavender from your plant in various ways, these include
- Placing fresh lavender in a pillowcase to encourage sleep at night
- Storing a fresh bouquet of lavender in your home to keep flies and other bugs at bay
- Making lavender essential oil from fresh lavender—place lavender flowers and buds in a jar and cover it with grain alcohol for two weeks in a dark cupboard, this will extract the oils from the lavender
Lavender oil has many benefits, these include:
- It’s relaxing—a study found that when people waiting for a dental appointment breathed in lavender, they had less anxiety and experienced a better mood
- It purifies the air—a study found that indoor bacteria were reduced when lavender oil evaporated in it
- It treats skin conditions such as psoriasis—the oil is beneficial for cleaning the skin and reducing both irritation and redness
- It can treat hair loss—an animal study of lavender oil found that when it was applied once a day for a month to the backs of mice, it encouraged hair growth, there is still research to be done on humans, though
- It can relieve migraine headaches—a study found that breathing in lavender essential oil is an effective and safe way to treat migraine headaches
- It can help wounds heal—research into how well lavender oil performed when healing skin found that wounds close at a faster rate when lavender oil is applied to them
Before applying lavender oil to the skin, it’s essential to mix a carrier oil with it so that it’s not too harsh for your skin. Diluting it with coconut or olive oil is a good idea. Then, when applying this blend to your skin, you can do so in the same way as you would with a regular body lotion.
How Easy Is Lavender to Take Care Of?
Lavender is a popular herb to grow in the home because it’s low-maintenance. This makes it easy to grow in containers and pots. Since it doesn’t require much in terms of care, lavender is ideal for gardening beginners.
It doesn’t require a lot of water, you should only water your lavender plants every two weeks once the plants are established. If there hasn’t been any rainfall in your area for two weeks, then it’s a good idea to water your lavender plants.
However, if you’ve just planted your lavender, then you should water it more regularly to help it become established. Water the lavender plants every other day for the first week, then every three days for the first three months.
All types of lavender plants require full sun conditions, so you don’t have to worry about your lavender getting too much light.
However, one thing you have to ensure when growing lavender, is that you don’t give it too much organic matter or fertilizer as this can prevent the plant from producing oils. Just make sure that the soil is well-draining and a little dry.
You should be careful when applying compost to your indoor plants. Read our guide on using compost for indoor house plants to find out more.
When planting lavender in the home, use a regular potting mix. But, add a bit of sand to encourage better drainage.
When your lavender plants start growing, you might notice that they become leggy. This happens when the plants stretch toward the light. Pruning your plants once a year can help to ensure that they stay full.
Here are some tips to prune lavender
- Prune your lavender late in the summer, after the plant has completed its blooming cycle
- Cut dead flower stalks and about one inch (2.54 cm) of leaf growth
- Never cut into the woody stems of the plant as lavender won’t get new growth from it easily
How Difficult Is Lavender to Propagate?
While you can grow lavender from seeds, this is a long process. If you’ve got a lavender plant that’s already growing healthily and you’d like to produce new plants from it, you can do that easily—lavender can be propagated from cuttings. While you can grow the cuttings in water, this isn’t as successful as other propagation methods.
Here’s how to effectively propagate lavender.
- Cut a non-flowering stem that has a woody base.
- Dip the end of the cutting into rooting hormone powder. I’d recommend Garden Safe Take Root Rooting Hormone from Amazon. To use it, simply wet the plant cutting, put the end into the rooting powder, and then plant it.
- Fill a small container with a mix that contains soil, organic material, and drainage elements such as pumice.
- Make a hole in it with a pencil.
- Insert the cutting and push it into the mix. It should be about three inches (7.62 cm) deep.
- Place the container near a sunny window. You want this to be a west- or south-facing window that receives about six hours of sunlight every day.
- When the mix becomes dry, water it.
- If you live in an area that experiences cold temperatures, cover the container with a clear plastic bag so the cuttings stay warm.
Your lavender cuttings should form roots within a month or six weeks. Leave the cuttings in the mix for another few weeks before transplanting them into a new pot. You’ll know that the lavender cuttings have taken root if you can feel a bit of resistance when you gently tug them.
Whether you’re using potting mix for lavender cuttings or established plants, you might wonder if the potting mix will go bad. Read our guide on healthy soil to understand what you need to look out for.
Do Lavender Plants Work as Natural Insect Repellents?
Lavender plants are natural insect repellents, which is why it’s a good idea to plant them in pots close to windows. This will prevent insects and bugs from entering your home.
But, why do lavender plants work as natural insect repellents?
Lavender oil contains a compound known as linalool. This is a common ingredient in pest control products. It can kill a variety of insects and bugs, such as mosquitoes, ticks, fleas, ants, and spiders.
To use lavender oil to keep bugs away and prevent them from biting or stinging you, you should apply a few drops of it directly to your skin. If your skin is sensitive, mix the lavender oil with a carrier oil, such as almond oil, before its application.
Lavender oil is also said to repel moths, so let some lavender from your plant dry out before putting it in your closet to keep your clothes in pristine condition.
If you want to repel mosquitoes in the home, however, you’ll need to blend lavender oil with other, more effective, oils. An example is geranium oil.
Although lavender oil does work to repel insects and bugs, research has found that it has a strong initial repellency against insects and then its effects wear away. Therefore, it’s worth planting lavender in your garden and home so that it can continue working to keep insects away.
Lavender is a beautiful herb to grow in the home and is easy to look after. In this article, we’ve featured all the tips you need to know when growing lavender from scratch, and how to propagate it from cuttings.