How to Grow Lavender from Seed using the Winter Sowing Method

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Learn how to grow lavender from seed, using the winter sowing method! ~The Reid Homestead #lavender #startinglavenderseed #wintersowing #wintersowinglavender
Learn how to use the winter sowing method to grow lavender from seed....the easy way!!! Winter sowing is using milk jugs as mini greenhouses, plant that seed, set it outdoors and forget about until spring! No fancy seed starting equipment needed! ~The Reid Homestead #lavender #plantinglavender #lavendar #growinglavender #plantinglavenderseed #growinglavenderseed #wintersowing #wintergardeningGrowing lavender from seed is easy using the winter sowing method! Check out my tips and tricks to learn how! ~The Reid Homestead #lavender #wintersowing #seedstaring #perennial #gardening #garden

Learn how to grow lavender from seed easily and simply using the winter sowing method!

I have been using the winter sowing method to grow lavender for the last couple of years. It has been really easy to grow a lot of lavender this way. Who doesn’t want to grow more lavender in their garden, right? It’s definitely one of my favorites! In this article I will show you how to grow lavender from seed using the winter sowing method.

Other related articles you may be interested in:
Seed Starting 101: Winter Sowing
My 2018 Winter Sowing Results Are In!
How to Organize your Seed Stash

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Collecting Your Own Lavender Seed

bunch of lavender

When the lavender is in full bloom in the summer time, it is really easy to save some of your own seed from plants you may already have. Trim a couple of branches from just below all the blooms. Use a rubber band wrapped tightly around the stems, and hang them up to dry somewhere dry in your house.

After they are good and dry, I place them in a ziplock back for storage until seed planting time. Be absolutely certain they are 100% dry, or they will mold. Then throw them in the freezer until you are ready to plant.

storing lavender seed in a ziplock baggie

Winter Sowing Basics

an empty milk jug and a bunch of lavender

If you are not familiar with Winter Sowing, it is the process of using milk jugs, as little greenhouses. Please see my article Seed Sowing 101: Winter Sowing, for more details about how to do it, with a step by step guide. You plant them, and set them outside in January. Super duper easy!

a milk jug cut in half and filled with soil in preperation to sow lavender seed in it

Planting the Lavender Seed

a lavender stalk with seed still on it

You can plant any hardy perennials in January when you use the winter sowing method. This goes for lavender too. So collect all your winter sowing materials, and your lavender seed. Fill the jugs with 3-4″ of dampened potting soil. Then take one branch of the lavender, pinching it with your fingers, move down the stem, and let the seed fall on top of the soil. I think I did 3-4 branches worth of seed for each jug.

a lavender stalk stripped of seed

You can see in the photo below, how much seed is dispersed across the soil. I don’t cover the seed with any soil. Take a water bottle and spray the seed well so that it is nice and wet. Then I like to put a plant label inside the jug. Tape the jug closed, the lid should be off and set it outside in an area where it will receive sun and rain (be sure it is not under an eave of your roof where it won’t get rain!). I like to set mine right out on my deck.

inside a milk jug that has been winter sown with lavender seed

Tending to the Lavender Seedlings

Keep a watch on the seed, so that you know when the seed has germinated and you have seedlings now growing. If you are having a really dry spell, or unusually warm spell, you may need to water them. Here in the PNW, I don’t usually have to do that at all, until later on when I open them up and it gets much warmer outside. Of course I couldn’t find a single photo of my winter sown lavender, so I will add a photo this spring!

Once it does get warm out, usually in the 60’s or warmer, you will want to open the jugs. Just remove the tape and open the lid. If you don’t, the seedlings will dry out very quickly because it will be very hot in those greenhouse jugs! Keep them watered well until you are ready to transplant them out into your yard. And now you know how to grow lavender seed the easy way!

Transplanting the Lavender Seedlings

When you are ready to transplant the seedlings, empty the jug by dumping in upside down. Literally pull the plants apart. It is ok if the dirt fall off of them, but they will need to be planted quickly after doing this.

a large bunch of lavender about to be planted

Get a trowel, and dig a good 6″ hole. Add some compost and mix in a bit of soil you removed from the hole and mix together. Then plant the lavender in the hole and be sure to water it deeply. Continue to water it well for the next few months while it gets established into its new home.

planting a lavender plant in a hole

Winter Sowing Flowers is a Cheap Easy Way to Grow Your Garden

Once you have done this once, you will be sure to do it every year! You can really grow your garden quickly and easilyy by using this very same method to grow all kinds of perennials and annuals for your yard (although annuals would be planted later in March). It is so easy in fact, I like to use this method to grow plants to sell as well! You can read more about how I sell plant starts here: How to Make Money Growing Plants at Home.

a field of lavender

Want to Remember This?

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  1. Nancy W | 11th Mar 19

    Two things to add to my to do list! Grown lavender from seed and try the winter sowing method! I just love lavender!

    • Tamara | 11th Mar 19

      Hi Nancy! YES! You must try winter sowing if you haven’t yet! It’s so easy and so little work. 🙂

  2. Linda | 2nd Jan 20

    Hi Tamara, you have just given me a tremendous joy knowing I can sow my favorite plant. I just question regarding the jug being or closed. In your instruction you say to tape jug closed and then in the same sentence you say the lid should be off. I’m so new with this, so you can expect stupid questions. Thank you for this website, I will definitely support you. Linda

    • Tamara | 4th Jan 20

      Hi Linda,
      After you slice the jug in half, and open it to add the dirt, you then close it and tape it so it will stay closed. The lid should be removed so that rain and fresh air can get in and it can vent if it gets warm out. Hope that helps! 🙂

  3. Traci | 24th Jan 20

    Hi Tamara,
    I live in the zone 4 and was wondering if anyone has tried your winter sowing up in the fridge winter here in northern Wisconsin. I am thinking of trying this and was just curious how the lavender grows in the colder climate thank you Traci

    • Tamara | 26th Jan 20

      Hi Traci! I am sure it can be successfull even in your cold area. Check out WinterSown.Org, they have an active forum where you can probably find others in your gardening zone and share tips with each other! Good luck with your lavender!

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