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I live in India (Bombay). It is very hot here in summers. I wish to grow Lavender on my balcony, however I am not sure if it will survive the heat.

What is the heat tolerance level of English lavender? Are there chances for it to survive if I plant it during winters when it is pleasant (16 to 28 °C)?

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By English Lavender, I assume you mean Lavandula augustifolia - it does well in Mediterranean countries, not sure if it has an upper heat tolerance, but will certainly thrive in temperatures up to 45 °C and likely higher. French lavender does well Zones 8-11, and the upper temperature in Zone 11 is around 50 °C.

What Lavender doesn't like is heavy, damp soil - it prefers gritty, light, free draining conditions. If you're growing in pots, then you will need to keep them watered. Regarding when to plant them, they are more heat resistant once established, but that's if you're growing them in the ground, so in pots, I don't think it matters. You can at least move them or provide some shade if the weather is extremely hot.

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  • And don't let the term "English lavender" fool you into thinking cool and wet - our fellow Englishmen would choose the sunniest spot available for their lavender! The names "English / Spanish / French lavender" is no hint to the plant's origin (the western Mediterranean mountains, e.g the Pyrenees, this case; hot and dry in summer with cool to cold winters), but notes where they were historically cultivated for perfume and similar uses. – Stephie Apr 22 '15 at 18:03
  • Please note my comment above: What would be your take on lavender needing "real" winter? – Stephie Apr 22 '15 at 18:24
  • @Stephie - needs a colder period to induce best flowering, but 'colder' may only be below 15 degrees C, depending on variety. – Bamboo Apr 23 '15 at 10:04
  • It is indeed Lavandula augustifolia .I am planning to grow it in pots. I did some research on how to plant it and take initial care. I learnt that humid summers can kill it in the initial phase. So if I plant Lavender now, I am afraid if it could sustain till the winter months. Not to forget, it will be raining cats and dogs from June to September. – Madhura Doshi Apr 23 '15 at 10:05
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    @MadhuraDoshi - I wondered whether you were trying to avoid a wet season rather than low/high temperatures. As that is the case, then wait till the rainy season's over... – Bamboo Apr 23 '15 at 10:09

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