Synonyms: Garden Lavender
Scientific Name: Lavandula angustifolia Mill.
Native of the western Mediterranean
Essential oil, flavonoids, phytosterols, coumarins
It is the embodiment of Provence, the longing dream of a Mediterranean summer, the happiness of relaxed moments. Its blue is without compare, turning lavender fields into a meditation carpet of calm and tranquility. As subshrub, lavender can grow to a height of 2 feet. In the flowering period from July to August six to ten small, two-lipped flowers form a spike-like terminal panicule. The narrow leaves, covered with a soft down, are also aromatic. Just run your hands through them and they will release their soothing fragrance.
The name lavender is thought to come from the Latin lavare = to wash - stemming from the Romans’ use of lavender to perfume their bath water. It was also the Romans who introduced the custom of putting dried lavender flowers amongst their fresh laundry to keep away moths.
The Hebrews used burn lavender for ritual purposes. The incense is said to have a purifying effect.
In the central European monastery gardens Lavender first appeared in the 11th century. Soon after, the belief spread that Mary Magdalene had used lavender oil to annoint the head of Jesus. Consequently, at the end of the 15th century a lavender oil allegedly composed in the manner of “Magdalene oil” and said to have numerous effects was promoted. Even in those days, people knew about advertising!
In the plant’s native countries, lavender leaves are also used as culinery herb. The slightly bitter and very aromatic leaves are used to season roast mutton, stewed meat, fish soups and salads and make the food more digestible.
The plant from another perspective
On their long stems the lavender flowers hover far above the shrub. Elevated, escaped from the leafiness of the plant; warmth-loving, they turn towards the sun, harvest its full power and present it to us in the essential oil.
The plant in our products
Lavender is used in: