SEQUIM — Who wears white and prescribes purple?
Paul Jendrucko, aka Dr. Lavender.
Jendrucko will recommend lavender up and down to those who possess “less than a green thumb.”
Easy to care for
It’s relatively easy to care for, and once it’s established, the fragrant flower will last for seven to eight years, he said.
Today, tomorrow and Sunday, some 40,000 people will give into purple fever and head to the “Lavender Capital of North America” for Sequim Lavender Weekend. Many of the events are free admission, but the most you’ll pay to visit one farm is $12.
So leave your wallet in the car, Jendrucko said — more as a challenge than a suggestion.
“You don’t have to pay a dime,” he said. “But I don’t think that will be possible after you experience the lavender. This is it. This is the best lavender you can buy.”
Jendrucko will be stationed in a booth with his wife, Mary Jendrucko, at the Sequim Lavender Festival Street Fair.
Street Fair hours
The Sequim Lavender Growers Association’s street fair runs along North Second Avenue, West Fir Street and West Alder Street from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. today and Saturday and from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday.
The Jendruckos own Sequim Lavender Co. and will be one of more than 150 vendors at the street fair. Mary Jendrucko is also president of the Sequim Lavender Growers Association.
Although they won’t be selling plants this year, Dr. Lavender will be there to answer all lavender-related questions, issue warnings for lavender care and offer plant demonstrations.
And yes, Dr. Lavender is a copyrighted name, and it checks out. Just don’t expect the full get-up.
“I don’t wear a stethoscope or carry a thermometer anymore because, well, too many people wanted to get checked out,” he said, laughing. “It got embarrassing.”
Jendrucko offered three tips for lavender growers. Think of it as a preview to the lavender knowledge that you can glean from his booth this weekend.
“These are the doctor’s orders,” he said.
• No. 1: When the pumpkins come out, you know it’s time to prune your lavender. Jendrucko calls it the “Halloween haircut.”
To prevent lavender plants from becoming “sprawly” and dead-looking, you need to trim about two to three inches off the green growth. If you hit brown, you’ve gone too far and your lavender might flatline.
Usually, lavender doesn’t recover from years of forgoing the shears. Sometimes, Jendrucko has to break the news to lavender growers who didn’t groom.
“It’s terminal,” he will say. “That’s my official Dr. Lavender assessment.”
But keep your lavender trimmed and it will resemble a bowl or lovable “sleeping porcupine” for years to come, he said.
• No. 2: Bathe your blooms in lavish rays. “Lavender are sun-worshippers,” Jendrucko said.
Lavender plants grow best with seven to eight hours of sunshine, and southern sun exposure is optimal, he said. That means your plants won’t fare well under a tree or the eave of your home; you might find your lavender wandering beyond its plot.
“Like a serpent, the lavender will search out the sun and it might follow an S-shape,” he said.
• No. 3: Pamper your soil. Cultivate it, add compost, whatever it takes for the ground to drain.
“You don’t want muddy sticky soil,” he said. “This is challenging for Washington.”
Lavender will repay you if you treat it to well-drained soil that air and water can pass through, he said.
For 10 pages stocked with more tips, visit the lavender festival’s website for Dr. Lavender’s owner manual.
The street fair on North Second Avenue, West Fir Street and West Alder Street also features a street dance from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. Saturday, live music throughout the weekend as part of “Lavenderstock” and a Festival for Fun for children 12 and younger.
For more information, go to www.lavenderfestival.com.
LavenderStock Music stage
• 11 a.m. — Opening ceremonies with Dr. Mac.
• 11:30 a.m. — Ranger and the “Re-Arrangers.”
• 12:45 p.m. — Kate Powers and David Rivers.
• 2 p.m. — The Crocs.
• 3:15 p.m. — Tekla Waterfield.
• 4:30 p.m. — Kevin Magner and Scott Bradley.
• 5:45 p.m. — Twisted Roots.
• 11 a.m. — Gary Stroutsos.
• 12:15 p.m. — Katrina Axtell Duo.
• 1:45 p.m. — Joy in Mudville.
• 3 p.m. — Caribe Steel Band.
• 4:15 p.m. — Honeyville Rascals.
• 5:30 p.m. — Jim Faddis and Cort Armstrong.
• 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. — Free street dance with Black Diamond Junction.
• 11 a.m. — Stringology.
• 12:15 p.m. — Derik Nelson & Family.
• 1:30 p.m. — Tanga.
• 2:45 p.m. — What Everly Brothers.
• 4 p.m. — The Cat’s Meow.
Reporter Sarah Sharp can be reached at 360-452-2345, ext. 56650, or at ssharp@peninsula dailynews.com.