Plant Library

Desert Lavender

Condea emoryi

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Desert Lavender (Condea emoryi) at Green Thumb Nursery

Desert Lavender in bloom

Desert Lavender in bloom

(Photo courtesy of NetPS Plant Finder)

Desert Lavender (Condea emoryi) at Green Thumb Nursery

Desert Lavender flowers

Desert Lavender flowers

(Photo courtesy of NetPS Plant Finder)

Height:  10 feet

Spread:  10 feet

Sunlight:  full sun 

Hardiness Zone:  10a

Other Names:  Hyptis emoryi


A frost sensitive native plant with highly fragrant foliage, similar to lavender and produces fragrant blue-lavender flowers in late winter to early spring; perfect as a hedge in hot, dry areas, does not require a lot of water to thrive well

Ornamental Features

Desert Lavender features showy clusters of fragrant purple flowers with blue overtones at the ends of the branches from late winter to early spring. It has attractive grayish green foliage with hints of silver. The fragrant narrow leaves are highly ornamental and remain grayish green throughout the winter.

Landscape Attributes

Desert Lavender is a multi-stemmed evergreen shrub with an upright spreading habit of growth. Its average texture blends into the landscape, but can be balanced by one or two finer or coarser trees or shrubs for an effective composition.

This is a relatively low maintenance shrub, and should only be pruned after flowering to avoid removing any of the current season's flowers. It is a good choice for attracting bees and butterflies to your yard. It has no significant negative characteristics.

Desert Lavender is recommended for the following landscape applications;

  • Mass Planting
  • Hedges/Screening
  • General Garden Use
  • Naturalizing And Woodland Gardens
  • Container Planting

Planting & Growing

Desert Lavender will grow to be about 10 feet tall at maturity, with a spread of 10 feet. It has a low canopy with a typical clearance of 1 foot from the ground, and is suitable for planting under power lines. It grows at a fast rate, and under ideal conditions can be expected to live for approximately 20 years.

This shrub should only be grown in full sunlight. It is very adaptable to both dry and moist growing conditions, but will not tolerate any standing water. It is considered to be drought-tolerant, and thus makes an ideal choice for xeriscaping or the moisture-conserving landscape. It is not particular as to soil pH, but grows best in sandy soils. It is quite intolerant of urban pollution, therefore inner city or urban streetside plantings are best avoided. This species is native to parts of North America..

Desert Lavender makes a fine choice for the outdoor landscape, but it is also well-suited for use in outdoor pots and containers. Its large size and upright habit of growth lend it for use as a solitary accent, or in a composition surrounded by smaller plants around the base and those that spill over the edges. It is even sizeable enough that it can be grown alone in a suitable container. Note that when grown in a container, it may not perform exactly as indicated on the tag - this is to be expected. Also note that when growing plants in outdoor containers and baskets, they may require more frequent waterings than they would in the yard or garden.

Hardiness Zone Plant Height Minimum Sunlight
Massing  Screening  Garden  Naturalizing  Container 
Flowers  Foliage Color  Attracts Wildlife 
Ornamental Features