Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Lovely Lavender

If I could choose but one plant in my garden it would be lavender.
One whiff of it's subtle fragrance, and I'm whisked back to my childhood and memories of my grandma's favorite Yardley's English Lavender toiletries.
Legend tells us that lavender was brought to England by the Romans. It was a highly valued plant due to it's healing, soothing and insect repelling properties.
Lavender oil was also used for massage.

The Lady of the Manor used lavender for culinary and medicinal purposes, and kept a still -room for preparation for use by family and staff.
Victorian ladies enjoyed lavender, turning their faces towards the sweet scent and inhaling it to calm their fluttering hearts.

A member of the mint family, and cousin to rosemary, lavender can be used like rosemary in many dishes.
The flowers, can be dried and tied in bunches, laying them in linen closets, or tucking them in dried flower arrangements and scattering sprigs wherever you choose.
A gentle shake or a fond pet of the plant releases the fragrance from early spring to frost.

" here's your sweet lavender
sixteen sprigs a penny
that you'll find my ladies
will smell as sweet as any "

~ The Lavender Seller's Cry, London, England 1900


donna baker said...

Please tell me Jo, why does lavender smell of mothballs to me? I dearly love to see it and planted a bed of it this spring, but I do not enjoy the smell of it. I must be the only one in the world. Me, I'll take the scent of violets any day. By the way, I planted different colors of lavender in the bed; didn't know there were other colors of the plant.

A Brit in Tennessee said...

Lol... not sure about that Donna, I guess your senses pickup a different smell, but Violets are lovely too !

DJan said...

I put a couple of lavender plants in my garden to repel feral cats, who were using my garden as a toilet! I found the tip on line, and besides I have lavender plants to enjoy! :-)

Nellie said...

I love lavender, but for some reason, it is unhappy here.:-(

Susie said...

Jo, If I ever got to see that much lavender, I would probably be brought to tears. It's so beautiful. xoxo,Susie

Terry said...

My Mother and my Aunt used to gift each other Yardley's English Lavender.
I don't think my lavender survived the winter this year.

Marielle Collins said...

It's a wonderful post, Jo. I do so love lavender, its smell always makes me feel like it's a sunny summer day.

Steven Cain said...

Always love seeing those long, beautiful purple beds. I'd plant my whole farm in lavender like that, if I thought for a minute it would grow well.

Ann Summerville said...

Beautiful picture. I think I've finally found one that survives in Texas, seems to have sprouted back after the winter.

Anonymous said...

I love lavender. Fortunately, lavender loves my garden and one plant has self-seeded everywhere, including my neighbours' gardens! I like to dry the flowerheads to make lavender bags.

Tasha T

Sartassa said...

I didn't know lavender was related to mint or Rosemary, but it makes sense. I have never used it in the kitchen though. any suggestions?