Pruning Lavendar

Question from Heather: I live near the coast. When is the best time to prune back lavendar? I did it a few months back, but not aggressively. Now they are even larger, too big in fact.

Answer from Pat: Prune lavendar as soon as the main blossom season has finished. Lavendar needs full sun. Otherwise it will grow towards the light and become uneven. Prune it after bloom by shearing the plant all over removing all the blooms and at least an inch or two of foliage. Don’t cut it back into bare wood, however. Only shear away of some of the gray green foliage and all of the blossoms. Some lavenders bloom mostly in spring, others in summer, some year round and others twice a year. The year round one’s are best sheared following spring bloom and again lightly in fall. Strive for a nice smooth rounded shape. By shearing lavender this way after bloom you can keep it more compact and help it to live longer. If growing in very poor soil, fertilize lightly after shearing with a balanced organic fertilizer and follow up with irrigation.


  1. I moved into a new home and a small Peach tree was on my lawn looking awful.. No fruit and think it was dying.. I pruned it back and cleaned it up and this year I have many peaches on it. It is a very small tree but the peaches are good size. I am finding sticky stuff oozing out on a few and also dark spots on some. I cannot visually see any bugs but some of the leaves have little holes so something is eating at it. What should I do?


    • Peach trees are prey to a flock of pests and diseases and unusually hot temperatures this year are exacerbating problems. Most problems you are having with fruit are more likely caused by disease and not by pests. Remove and discard any damaged fruit, or eat the good parts if part of the fruit are edible. Make sure none are left lying on the ground. Check beneath leaves and squish any caterpillars you see. However, a few holes in leaves are not serious. Clean up any debris and fallen fruit under the tree and replace with fresh mulch. Check the trunk for ants and if you find some, spread earthworm castings over the roots surrounding the trunk beginning a foot or two away from the trunk. This will get rid of ants that bring pests. Next winter after leaves fall, refer to a pruning manual and prune the tree, Then apply dormant spray three times in November, December and January. All peach trees will eventually get peach leaf curl if they are not dormant sprayed in winter.

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