Lavender is one of those plants that surprise gardeners when it fails to thrive. It’s so hardy and tolerant of abuse that seeing a drooping, wilting lavender plant is a pretty rare occurrence. But if you are experiencing lavender drooping, take no offense: it can be caused by a few different reasons, some of which aren’t your fault and are super easy to fix. In this article, we’re going to talk about what causes your lavender to wilt and droop and how to fix it.
Why is my lavender drooping?
Much of the time, if lavender is drooping, it has something to do with the daytime temperature or the way you’re watering your plant. It is rarely due to improper fertilization. Really, it boils down to four factors, some of which may overlap. When diagnosing wilting lavender, consider all 4 reasons listed below.
Too much water
You commonly hear of too little water being the primary cause of wilting plants, but in the case of lavender, it can be both too much or too little water. Signs that you are overwatering your lavender include drooping, leaves near the base of the plant turning yellow, and a foul, rotting odor near the soil. If you’ve been keeping your lavender very moist and are experiencing wilting alongside these other symptoms of excessive watering, you’re probably overdoing it. The likely fix to this issue is just dialing back the amount of water you’re providing and making sure your potted lavender properly drains.
Too little water
Too little water is a classic cause of wilting plants, but lavender can be tricky in this regard. I’ve seen lavender plants die from lack of water and never actually droop or wilt. So this really isn’t the most common reason for lavender drooping. If your plant’s soil is extremely dry and it’s drooping, it is probably time to water it. But don’t count on this being the most likely reason your lavender is drooping.
Lack of drainage
The issue of poor drainage goes hand-in-hand with giving your lavender plant too much water. If your soil can’t drain properly due to compaction or plugged drainage holes, water can get trapped around the roots of your lavender plant, which may cause root rot. Root rot is a fungus that grows well in soggy soil. It eats away at the roots of your plants which prevents the uptake of water and nutrients from the soil. A plant afflicted with root rot will begin to wilt and die, no matter how much water is provided. The easiest way to fix this is to simply move your lavender into a pot that has good drainage. Consider replacing some of the soil and cutting away any rotted roots as well.
The final likely cause of lavender drooping is excessive heat. On extremely hot days, regardless of the amount of water provided to your plant, your lavender may wilt. It’s just a reaction to the hot air temperature around the plant’s leaves. It’s usually not a significant concern, and when temperatures return to a cooler normal, your lavender plant will perk back up again.
Summary of lavender drooping and wilting
As mentioned already, it’s important to take into consideration all of the possible causes of wilting and drooping lavender. It could be that you have poorly draining soil and are watering too much. You could be watering too much or too little on very hot days. It really can vary, you just need to think through how it is you’ve been caring for your lavender plants and make adjustments accordingly.