Who does not love Lavender? Used since time immemorial as a medicinal herb, an insect repellent, an aromatic oil and a general all round house hold essential especially when there was a bit of strewing to be done. The Romans and Greeks used Lavender when bathing and that is the origin of the botanical name Lavandula (la-van-dew-la) which comes from the Latin word lavare meaning to bathe or wash. Lavenders natural home is the Mediterranean region, the Middle East and India.
Believe it or not the much loved English Lavender does not come from England at all. It was probably introduced by a conqueror who like to smell nice and wouldn't travel anywhere without his favourite herb. History tells us that Lavender grew in England from about 1265 onwards. Talking of smelling nice Lavender is one of the main ingredients in the world famous Eau de Cologne, 4711, named after the street number of the 18th century inventor of "water from Cologne".
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Lavender has a strong biblical connection too; it is mentioned several times under the name 'Spikenard'. Spikenard i.e. Lavender Oil was a precious and expensive commodity and it is written that Mary used this oil to anoint the feet of Jesus.
There are about 30 species of Lavender. They are described variously has shrubs, sub shrubs, herbs, or herbaceous perennials. They all have highly aromatic foliage and flowers but it is Lavandula angustifolia and its various cultivars that is the most popular for the production of Lavender Oil. The pungent oil is collected from the oil glands at the base of the flower spikes. Lavenders are generally short lived and in their natural habitat the volatile oil can cause spontaneous combustion which means they would be very short lived indeed!
All Lavenders are sun lovers and they prefer to grow in well drained soil. They will grow happily with little or no fertilizer. Lavenders are best trimmed after flowering. If you wish the discarded flowers can be dried for pot pourri etc. Bees love Lavender flowers so make sure you plant a couple of bushes near the vegetable plot or orchard for pollination purposes. Great for hedging or edging, perfect in the perennial border and lovely in a pot. Love Lavender? We certainly do.
Lavender was strewed throughout houses during the Great Plague of London (1665) as it was thought to be a protection against disease.
Lavandula. English Lavender-White. For those who like a subtle planting scheme, this form of the highly aromatic Lavender is a must. Narrow grey-green foliage and slender spikes of white flowers in summer. Lovely for a little hedge or group planting. Trim after flowering. Evergreen.
Flower Colour: White Mature Size 7-10 yrs (HxW): 60cm x 100cm
Lavender Angustifolia Alba
Expected Stock Height: 10/15 cm ?
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A Spanish variety with Pink/purple flowers with beautiful pink ruffled tufts on top. A more compact variety that is great for pots, hanging baskets or used as a border. Fantastic for bees and other beneficial insects. Plant in a well drained sunny spot and lightly trim after flowering. Evergreen.
A Spanish variety with dark purple/ violet flowers with beautiful purple ruffled tufts. A more compact variety that is great for pots, hanging baskets or used as a border. Fantastic for bees and other beneficial insects. Plant in a well drained sunny spot and lightly trim after flowering. Evergreen.
A Spanish variety with small purple flowers with beautiful white ruffled tufts on top. A more compact variety that is great for pots, hanging baskets or used as a border. Fantastic for bees and other beneficial insects.
Flower Colour: White Habit: Compact Mature Size (HxW): 25cm x 25cm
Lavandula. This is a compact variety of English Lavender producing striking, deep violet-blue flowers in the summer. Delightfully fragrant with that true 'Lavender' fragrance we all love. Good for attracting bees to the garden. Trim after flowering. Plant in a well drained sunny spot. Evergreen.
The trimmed flower heads can be dried in the sun or in a warm dry spot and used for making lavender sachets, pot pourri etc. Make sure you do this trimming before autumn so your Lavender has a chance to re-grow before it gets too cold.
Lavandula. An 'English' type Lavender with deliciously aromatic foliage and flowers. The grey leaves are off set by dark purple flower heads that appear from summer through to early autumn. Makes a lovely hedge. Trims well (after flowering). Plant in a sunny well drained position. Evergreen
After trimming your Lavender dry the flower heads to use for potpourri. Top tip - put dried Lavender in the vacuum cleaner bag to perfume your whole home and keep the vacuum smelling sweet.
Lavandula. Bred to be a compact plant with masses of flowers through the spring and summer. Striking silver foliage complimented with aromatic, pink flower heads. A neat, compact habit and low maintenance. Dry tolerant, easy to grow. Prune back by a third in late summer to maintain shape. Evergreen.
Lavandula Hybrid. A popular Lavender that produces an abundance of long stemmed, dark lavender flower heads through-out the summer. These are used commercially for dried flowers and oil production. Just lovely in the garden and will help attract bees. Well worth planting for the fragrance alone.
'Grosso' is probably one of the most deliciously fragrant of all the Lavenders available to gardeners' today. Evergreen.
Lavandula. Named after one of England's finest gardens this lovely little English Lavender has intensely aromatic foliage and flowers. The deep purple flowers appear on fine stems in summer. Happiest in a sunny well drained position. Trim after flowering. Evergreen. RHS AGM.
This lavender is bit different with lots of frilly wings nestled in the dark purple flower bracts all the way down the bloom. A compact bush that is highly fragrant, drought tolerant and attracts bees. Blooms with beautiful mauve wings are stunning in the garden whether planted singly or in bulk.
Lightly trim after flowering and fertilize to promote continuous flowering.