Native Plants of Lavandula angustifolia in Rocks Roofs
Native Plants of Lavandula angustifolia

Lavandula angustifolia - Origin, Description and Use

Lavandula angustifolia (English Lavender) also belongs to that category of plants that their diverse botanical names can bring some form of confusion to the amateur researcher or grower. The source of this confusion is the simultaneous existence of various taxonomic systems for their categorization and description.

In order to eliminate precisely this confusion, it is worth mentioning here that Lavandula vera, L.spica, L.officinalis, L. vulgaris, are nothing but four different names of the same plant, Lavandula angustifolia.

Lavandula angustifolia – English Lavender, Origin, Description and Usage

Natural habitat of Lavandula angustifolia
Natural habitat of Lavandula angustifolia

Origin and Spread of Lavandula angustifolia

Lavandula angustifolia is an endemic plant of the central and western regions of the northern side of the Mediterranean basin.

Origin - Spreading Zones of Lavandula angustifolia
Origin – Spreading Zones of Lavandula angustifolia

Its native populations are located in western and northern Italy, southeastern France and eastern Spain and at an altitude of almost 1800 meters above sea level. Its habitats are located on the sunny sides of the mountains of these areas and on poor, rocky and calcareous soils. Although Mediterranean origin tolerates or can withstand low temperatures up to -12 ° C.

Extremely adaptive plant, English Lavender spread over time and beyond its original areas, either naturally or with the contribution of the man who cultivated it for productive or ornamental purposes.

Lavandula angustifolia – English Lavender, Origin, Description and Usage

Wild Lavandula angustifolia in the Mountains of Provence
Wild Lavandula angustifolia in the Mountains of Provence

Botanical Description

Lavandula angustifolia is a perennial evergreen, in warm winter areas, dwarf shrub 30 to 90 cm high and 60 to 90 cm in diameter. It has dense form and gray-green to green foliage. Its leaves are simple, slightly tomentose, linear to lanceolate-linear up to 5 cm and carried oppositely to square cross-section stems.

Its numerous verticillaster flowers appear on terminal spikes and are purple in color. Leaflike bracts are in an opposite arrangement below each whorl and usually are shorter than calyces. The purple-gray in color calyx is tubular, ribbed and hairy with shiny oil glands among the hairs visible with a hand lens.

Both leaves and flowers are aromatic because they contain essential oil which distills, however the essential oil extracted from its flower peaks is of superior quality.

Lavandula angustifolia – English Lavender, Origin, Description and Usage

Native Shrub of Lavandula angustifolia
Native Shrub of Lavandula angustifolia
Bulk Flower of Lavandula angustifolia
Bulk Flowers of Lavandula angustifolia
Growing of Lavandula angustifolia in Provence
Growing of Lavandula angustifolia in Provence

Uses of Lavandula angustifolia

Both the plant itself and its plant parts along with the essential oil are used in many ways.

Lavandula angustifolia is traditionally used as a herbal diaphoretic, diuretic, anthelmintic and tonic.

Essential oil has a wide scope of application and is used in perfumery, pharmaceutical, cosmetics, soap industries, and in the detergent industry.

Dried flowers of Lavandula angustifolia is used for ornamental purposes, to protect clothes from the moth and for the fragrance as deodorant of the interior.

Finally, the plants and its many varieties are used as ornamental in the garden, gardening and landscaping architecture.

The well-known Spanish botanist Paco de Lucia adds musically, a little more about the coloring uses of Lavandula angustifolia.

Bibliography

  1. Σκρουμπής Βύρων Γ., 1985. Αρωματικά φυτά και αιθέρια έλαια [Aromatic plants and essential oils]., Θεσσαλονίκη
  2. Maria Lis-Balchin (Eds.). (2002). Lavender, The genus Lavandula. London: Taylor & Francis.
  3. Tardio, Javier., Pardo de Santayana, Manuel, & Morales, Ramon. (2006). Ethnobotanical review of wild edible plants in Spain. Botanical Journal of the Linnean Society, 152(1), 27–71.
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