Lavender – English Lavender

Lavender – English Lavender – plant care guide

Lavender – English Lavender

Lavandula angustifolia, common name lavender is a genus of 40+ species of flowering plants in the mint family, Lamiaceae and native to the Old World from Europe to Eastern Africa, Southwest Asia, and India. These aromatic sub-shrubs are famously grown in herb gardens and the intensely perfumed blue-violet, pink, mauve, or white flowers are treasured for drying and making potpourri, which is a mixture of dried, naturally fragrant plant materials, often placed in a decorative bowl and used to provide a gentle natural scent.

Of all the varieties, English Lavender (l. angustifolia and munstead) have the sweetest fragrance and are the ones commonly used in cooking. Since they belong to the mint family, same as rosemary, sage, and thyme, culinary Lavender has a sweet, floral flavor, with lemon and citrus notes. Both the leaves and the flowers can be used fresh, while stems and buds are used once dried and the potency of the lavender flowers increases after drying. The flower is in the shade of light purple and Lavender color is named so coz of the flower color.

Lavender is a very hardy perennial plant that can be grown both outdoors as well as indoors, and they need good 6+ hours of bright sunlight every day. Outdoors they should be kept in dry sunny spots. An overall dry and sunny climate works best for growing lavender. In India, Lavender is successfully cultivated in the hilly slopes of Himachal Pradesh, Kashmir valley, and Uttarakhand. 

Lavender is a drought-tolerant plant and should be watered thoroughly and evenly only when the soil is almost dry. Lean soil encourages a higher concentration of oils, a well-drained alkaline soil enhances lavender’s fragrance. Pruning should be done immediately after bloom as it promotes new growth. And the flowers should be harvested as the buds first begin to open. Lavender plant contains linalool and linalyl acetate in smaller concentration, which is toxic to both dogs and cats.

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