The perfume from a lavender hedge is without equal, while the beautiful purple flowers attract scores of bees and butterflies in summer. The strongest scent is released when the flowers are brushed, so plant your hedge where you can run your fingers through the stems as you pass.
When to plant: Spring.
At their best: Summer.
Time to complete: 2 hours.
You will need: Small lavender plants, well-rotted organic matter – such as manure, horticultural grit, trowel or small spade, all-purpose liquid fertilizer.
Prepare the ground
A month or two before planting your hedge, dig plenty of wellrotted organic matter into the soil to improve drainage. Also dig horticultural grit into heavy, clay soils, as lavender will rot in wet conditions.
Space plants evenly
In spring, buy small plants and make holes at 12in (30cm) intervals, or dig out a long trench. The plants will not require additional fertilizer at this stage. Plant so they are at the same level as they were in their pots.
Firm in soil
In heavier, clay-rich soil, plant the lavenders slightly above the soil surface, and draw up soil around the root ball, to encourage water to drain away from the base of the plant. Firm in around all the plants with your fingers.
Water the plants well. Although lavenders are very drought-tolerant, they will need to be watered for the first growing season until they are fully established. In spring, apply an all-purpose liquid fertilizer to the plants and cut them back twice a year.