Herb: Lavender


Latin name: Lavandula x intermedia


Family: Labiatae



Medicinal use of Lavender:

The following uses are for L. angustifolia, they should also apply to this hybrid:- Lavender is a commonly used household herbal remedy. An essential oil obtained from the flowers is antihalitosis, antiseptic, antispasmodic, aromatic, carminative, cholagogue, diuretic, nervine, sedative, stimulant, stomachic and tonic. It is not often used internally, though it is a useful carminative and nervine. It is mainly used externally where it is an excellent restorative and tonic - when rubbed into the temples, for example, it can cure a nervous headache, and it is a delightful addition to the bath-water. Its antiseptic properties also make it useful in the treatment of burns, sunburn, scalds, bites, vaginal discharge, anal fissure etc, where it also soothes the affected part of the body and can prevent the formation of permanent scar tissue. The essential oil is used in aromatherapy. Its keyword is "Immune system".

Description of the plant:



Plant:
Evergreen
Shrub

Height:
120 cm
(4 feet)

Flovering:
July to
September


Scent:
Scented
Shrub

Habitat of the herb:

Not known in the wild,

Edible parts of Lavender:

The following uses are for L. angustifolia, they should also apply to this hybrid:- Leaves, petals and flowering tips - raw. Used as a condiment in salads, soups, stews etc. They provide a very aromatic flavour and are too strong to be used in any quantity. The fresh or dried flowers are used as a tea. The fresh flowers are also crystallized or added to jams, ice-creams, vinegars etc as a flavouring. An essential oil from the flowers is used as a food flavouring.

Other uses of the herb:

The following uses are for the closely related L. angustifolia, they should also apply to this hybrid:- The essential oil that is obtained from the flowers is exquisitely scented and has a very wide range of applications, both in the home and commercially. It is commonly used in soap making, in making high quality perfumes (it is also used in "Eau de Cologne"), it is also used as a detergent and cleaning agent, a food flavouring etc and as an insect repellent. Yields of 0.8 - 1% of the oil are obtained. When growing the plant for its essential oil content, it is best to harvest the flowering stems as soon as the flowers have faded. The aromatic leaves and flowers are used in pot-pourri and as an insect repellent in the linen cupboard etc. They are also said to repel mice. The flowering stems, once the flowers have been removed for use in pot-pourri etc, can be tied in small bundles and burnt as incense sticks. Can be grown as a low hedge, responding well to trimming.

Propagation of Lavender:

Seed - sow spring in a greenhouse and only just cover the seed. It usually germinates in 1 - 3 months at 15C. When large enough to handle, prick the seedlings out into individual pots and grow them on in the greenhouse or cold frame for their first winter, planting them out in late spring after the last expected frosts. This species is a hybrid and will not come true from seed. Cuttings of half-ripe wood 7 - 10cm with a heel, July/August in a frame. Usually very east, a high percentage will root within a few weeks. Grow them on in the greenhouse for their first winter and plant them out in late spring after the last expected frosts. Cuttings 7cm with a heel succeed at almost any time of the year. Layering.

Cultivation of the herb:

Not known in the wild,

Known hazards of Lavandula x intermedia:

None known

Plant information taken from the Plants For A Future.