Prune lavender plants every year to encourage healthy plants.
image by marcin_modestowicz: morguefile.com
Growing a healthy lavender plant requires periodic pruning. A gardener must trim off new growth to encourage the lavender plant to grow bushier and fuller. When lavender plants are not regularly pruned, their centers become woody instead of staying lush and green. For best results, prune a lavender plant at least once during every growing season after the plant has bloomed.
Remove all flowers during a lavender's first growing season. Do not let a new lavender plant flower at all during the first summer of growth. Pinch upper growth back slightly to encourage the plant to grow out more than up.
Prune after the lavender plant flowers in successive growing seasons. Prune during the summer or in the fall. If you wait to prune until the fall, however, be sure to prune several weeks before the first expected freeze of the autumn.
Cut the plant back by approximately one-third to prune it properly and to encourage the plant to grow bushy. Do not prune so heavily that you do not leave any foliage, however, because the plant will not survive this kind of pruning.