what type of lavender grows well here?
I can only keep any form alive for a couple of years, with four years being the longest any one plant has survived. They are easy from cuttings taken in the fall, so I always keep a back up plant or two. My plants usually die in the Spring or late Winter for no apparent reason.
Mine are only happy in raised beds with almost 50% gravel added to the soil. They won't live in clay no matter what you do.
Don't know where you are in SC. The soil varies greatly in SC.
I'm in the Midlands, where our soil is VERY sandy.
I planted lavender about 6 years ago, its still alive.
I do nothing to it. I guess every once in a while I should fertilzie it a bit, but I don't.
SO, if you have real sandy soil, buy some composted cow manure from Lowes, and plant it.
NO MULCH ever.
If too many leaves get around the bottom of it, just rake them away. It will rot if you don't.
If you are in an area with clay, don't bother planting it, in the ground that is.
Pots, just buy a good draining potting soil, and don't water it too much,
We've seen the three major species of lavender sold at local nurseries: Lavandula angustifolia (English lavender), L. dentata (called mostly French lavender), and L. stoechas (called mostly Spanish lavender), as well as numerous cultivars and hybrids. The common names French and Spanish are often applied inconsistently to make them essentially useless. Southern States carries a good collection of herbs, including various lavenders.
While all lavender species share strong preference for full sun and well drained soil, most Web profiles of L. stoechas point out its higher tolerance for clay as well as heat and humidity of the Southeast all the way down to Texas.
We've had quite positive experience with L. stoechas and have about 30 individual plants arranged in two informal hedges. All of them came from cuttings from a neighbor's stand, which was doing surprisingly well given its partial shade and relatively moist location. We thought that if it managed to survive there for several years it should be able to do quite well in an optimal site. Out of about 50 cuttings treated with powder rooting hormone, stuck into shallow trays with commercial top soil, and left outside in November, close to 40 were rooted next spring. All were planted in unamended local soil (2-3" sandy loam with clay underneath) on a slight slope. Last winter we lost three shrubs that were in the areas that are the most shaded in spring and fall (full sun in summer).
As an experiment, we also planted two shrubs of L. angustifolia grown from seeds. They are at the south border of a quite dry bed densely planted with many shrubs under a large crape myrtle and a sweetgum. L. angustifolia is often reported to melt in the Southern heat, and those shrubs have experienced only the last two cooler summers, so it's too early to claim success.
Thank everyone for their help !!
I've had an Otto Quast Spanish lavender for over ten years and have dug up layered sections from it with continued success.
It's in bright shade for half the day.