If you find yourself in the company of the 30 to 40 percent of Americans who suffer from insomnia don't waste your time counting sheep.Try the soothing scent of lavender instead. Known for its ability to relax and induce a restful sleep, lavender sachets or potpourris are often placed in bedrooms to scent the air with gentle fragrance. Growing your own lavender provides an ample supply of this stress-reducing herb to chase those leaping sheep away.
Select a location that receives 6 to 8 hours of direct sunlight a day.
Till the soil to a depth of 8 to 10 inches. Remove any overturned roots or stones and rake the area smooth.
Spread a 2- to 4-inch layer of compost over the planting site. Work the compost into the top 4 to 6 inches of soil.
Make a hole twice a big as the root ball of your lavender seedlings. Plant seedlings to the original planting depth and fill in around the roots with soil. Firm down with your hands to secure the plant.
Water thoroughly to saturate the root ball. Keep soil moist until new growth appears. Once plants are established, decrease watering to once a week. Saturate the soil to the root level and allow soil to dry before watering again.
Space individual seedlings according to their predicted height at maturity by matching the distance between plants to the approximate height of the plant. Height depends on the specific cultivar. While some cultivars reach heights of 3 feet, others grow to a mere 12 inches. Check the plant identification tag to determine the height of your plants at maturity.
Mulch to conserve water and to control weeds. Add a 2- to 3-inch layer of wood chips or grass clippings around the base of the plants. Leave a 2-inch margin between the mulch and the stem of the plant.
Prune lavender after blooming by removing flower stems and cutting foliage back by one-third of the height of the plant. This encourages new growth and creates dense foliage.
Trim lavender again in the spring, cutting foliage back to 2 to 3 inches from the woody stems.