What Temperature Should My Lavender Be Kept At?

By Kiersten Rankel

Dec 16, 20236 min read

  1. 60-85°F ideal for Lavender, ensuring bloom and oil production.
  2. 🌡️ Watch for wilting or yellow leaves as signs of temperature stress.
  3. Mulching and shade cloths help regulate Lavender's temperature.

Optimal Temperature Range for Lavender

Lavender thrives in warmth. The sweet spot for these fragrant plants is between 60 and 85 degrees Fahrenheit. This range is crucial for robust growth and the production of those coveted blooms and essential oils.

🌡️ Why Temperature Matters

Lavender is not just a pretty face; it's a botanical powerhouse, producing oils that calm the mind and could even encourage hair growth. But to coax out those precious oils, you've got to keep it comfy in its preferred climate.

🌸 Flowering and Oil Production

The Mediterranean climate it calls home has set the bar high. To see your lavender burst into a purple haze of flowers, maintaining this temperature range is non-negotiable. It's like the plant's personal thermostat for triggering bloom and fragrance production.

🌿 English Lavender: A Hardy Exception

Take note: English Lavender bucks the trend. It's the tough cousin in the family, shrugging off colder temperatures with a frosty resilience. But for the most part, lavender's not a fan of the cold; below 40 degrees Fahrenheit, and you're in the danger zone.

🧪 Essential Oil Quality

Lean soil might seem counterintuitive, but it's the secret sauce for high-quality essential oils. Too much nitrogen, and you risk turning that sweet scent sharp. So, keep it lean to keep it fragrant.

🌞 Lavender's Dislike of Humidity

Remember, lavender loves the sun on its face and the wind in its hair. High humidity? Not so much. Aim for a low humidity level of 20-35% to avoid a sad, rot-prone plant.

In essence, if you want your lavender living its best life, think warm, sunny days by the Mediterranean – or at least do your best to mimic those conditions.

Recognizing Temperature Stress in Lavender

Lavender is a hardy herb, but it's not immune to temperature tantrums. Here's how to spot if your plant is feeling the heat or shivering in the cold.

🌡️ Signs of Heat Stress in Lavender

❄️ Cold Stress Symptoms

  • Leaves turning a ghostly pale or yellow indicate a chilly lavender.
  • Stunted growth or fewer blooms? Your plant might be too cold to get its groove on.
  • If your lavender's leaves are dropping like it's autumn, it's probably too cold.

The Flowering Connection

Temperature stress doesn't just cramp your lavender's style—it can wreck its flowering mojo. Keep your plant in its comfort zone for a floral fiesta.

Managing Lavender in High Temperatures

🌡️ Strategies for Heatwaves and Hot Climates

In the scorching embrace of summer, Lavender requires a bit of pampering. Watering is key; ensure the soil is moist but not waterlogged to prevent root rot. Mulch with rocks to reflect heat and maintain soil temperature. If potted, move your Lavender to a shadier spot during peak heat hours.

🌺 Flowering Cycle and Heat

High temperatures can mess with Lavender's internal clock, delaying or even halting flowering. To keep the blooms coming, provide afternoon shade and consider a light misting to cool the air around the plants. Remember, Lavender loves the heat, but everything has its limits.

🌍 Real-World Observations

It's a delicate dance with the thermometer. Lavender thrives up to about 45 °C, but beyond that, it's a stress test. In extreme heat, growth may stall, and the plant's energy is sapped. Keep an eye on your Lavender; if it looks wilted or distressed, it's time to intervene.

Self-Reflective Insight

As gardeners, we're part weather-watchers, part plant-whisperers. It's about tuning into nature's rhythms and adapting our care to meet the moment. When the mercury rises, we rise to the occasion, armed with a watering can and a dash of ingenuity.

Protecting Lavender from Cold Stress

❄️ Insulation Against the Cold

To shield your lavender from the chill, think of it as tucking in a child on a frosty night. Mulching heavily around the base of the plant can act like a cozy blanket, trapping heat in the soil. For potted lavender, consider a temporary relocation to a garage or any frost-free zone when the mercury dips.

❄️ Frost Protection

When Jack Frost is more than a myth, a frost blanket or burlap can be a lavender lifesaver, providing a few degrees of insulation. Remember, it's not just about surviving the night; it's about ensuring the plant wakes up to a good morning.

❄️ Cold Stress and Dormancy

Lavender's disdain for the cold isn't a secret. Temperatures below 40 degrees F (4 C) at night can send a newly planted lavender into shock, or worse, the great garden in the sky. Mature plants can withstand down to 10 degrees F (-12 C), but don't push your luck.

❄️ Dormancy vs. Death

Don't mistake a lavender's winter nap for its last breath. Dormancy is its way of saying, "I'll catch you on the flip side when the sun's back." A dormant plant will still show signs of life in its green, whereas a dead plant will be as brown and hollow as a chocolate Easter bunny post-holiday.

❄️ Flowering Potential

Cold toes can lead to a no-show in the flowering department. Lavender likes its roots cozy, with soil temperatures above 50°F for optimal growth. A cold snap can delay or diminish flowering, so keep those roots warm if you're keen on blooms.

Temperature Control Techniques for Lavender

Lavender thrives in a Goldilocks zone—not too hot, not too cold. Here's how to keep it just right.

🌡️ Practical Temperature Maintenance

Mulching is your friend. It insulates roots against temperature extremes, keeping them cool in the blaze and cozy in the chill. For potted plants, consider moving them to shadier spots during heatwaves or indoors when Jack Frost looms.

Watering plays a dual role. Lavender prefers a drink followed by a drought. Soak the soil, then let it dry out completely. This cycle helps roots stay temperate. Remember, overwatering is a no-go—it's the fast track to root rot.

💧 Humidity and Lavender: A Delicate Dance

Lavender's not a fan of the sauna. Aim for low humidity, around 20-35%. If your air feels like a wet blanket, a dehumidifier might be your best purchase this year. Or, get a fan to keep the air moving—stagnant air is the silent killer of Mediterranean flora.

🌱 Advanced Techniques: Beyond the Basics

Greenhouse growers, listen up. Temperature regulation can be a game-changer. Use shade cloths to protect against scorching sun. In winter, heating mats can ward off the cold. But don't overdo it—lavender's no tropical orchid.

Remember, these plants are the rugged individualists of the garden. They don't need coddling, just a bit of savvy to keep the temperature in check.

Ensure your lavender thrives 🌡️ by leveraging Greg's environmental tracking to keep your plant in its ideal temperature sweet spot!