All You Need To Know About The Dried Lavender

The processes involved in making your own dried lavender are fantastic for all the senses.

  • The beautiful colour of the lavender flowers is offset by their silvery foliage.
  • Smell the scent as you brush against the flowers and cut their stems.
  • Feel the soft dried flowers as you run your hands through them.
  • Hear the bees buzzing as they collect their pollen busy among the flowers.

Calm descends on you and you can daydream while you prepare the lavender.

Lavender should be cut after the dew of the early morning has been burnt off by the warm sun.

No more than half the flowers on the stalk should be open, although sometimes with the weather here in Britain you just have to go for it or risk having no crop at all.

The flowers should then be as dry as possible to begin with. Rainy weather and no sunshine to dry out the blooms can lead to problems with mould and make it difficult to obtain a good product.

Cut the lavender flowers with as long a stalk as possible, they can always be trimmed afterwards if their uneven appearance offends!

Collect the stems of lavender flowers in a basket or box and try to keep it together and the same way up (otherwise you just make extra work for yourself later on).

All You Need To Know About The Dried Lavender

Be realistic about the amount of lavender you have to cut and how much time you have available – it would be sad to waste some of your precious crop if you didn’t have the time to fully process it all after cutting it.

If you are cutting lots of blooms and wish to dry a large quantity of lavender, gather up small bundles of about 100 stems and tie these with some string.

If your bundles are too large then there is not enough room for the air to circulate around the flowers and dry them.

Once you have bundled up all your lavender, hang it in a dry, airy place. Hanging it in the dark may preserve more of the beautiful colour than allowing the sun to reach it but it really depends to what use you are going to put the dried lavender- inside a lavender bag, the colour is not really important!

Leave space between each bundle, again, to allow the air to circulate. With limited space to hang your bundles they could be hung at different heights.

Don’t hang them where they may be knocked regularly because although this will release their gorgeous scent, it will also mean some of your flowers will fall to the ground each time and be wasted. (Although they do smell good when hoovered up!) The lavender flowers are dry when rubbing the flower heads between your hands causes the majority of the buds to fall off the stem.

This is usually after 3-4 weeks, but obviously it depends on where they are hanging to dry.

Depending on what you wish to do with your dried lavender you can leave the flowers on the stalk or remove them.

Leaving them on the stalks means you must transfer them very carefully to an airtight container and not pack them too tightly together or the flowers will come off anyway.

To collect the flowers, rub each bundle between your hands and remove any stubborn flowers individually. Then store them in an airtight container. Dried lavender flowers can last for years like this, although obviously their scent eventually deteriorates over time, just check before you use a batch you have stored that it still has that gorgeous scent.

If this all seems like too much trouble or you want to do your craft project without having to wait for this process to be completed, there are plenty of outlets that sell dried lavender flowers for you to use. Once you have your wonderful supply of lavender, it is time to decide what to do with it…