(Lavandula angustifolia)
Lavandula angustifolia


An aromatic shrub-like perennial. It has greyish leaves and stems. Fragrant purple-blue flowers in long spikes which appear in June and July.


L. angustifolia is the lavender of commerce and is quite widely cultivated in Cyprus but is not a native of the Eastern Mediterranean region. It likes to grow in full sunlight, on chalky, well-drained soils.


Sachets of lavender are commonly used to perfume clothes and keep moths away. Well known as a medicinal plant since ancient times and still widely used in Islamic medicine. Used in bath water since Roman times and indeed the English name may have derived from the Latin "lavare" (to wash). It is reputed to have excellent tranquillising effects, inhalation soothing troubled nerves and depression. The well-known herbalist Culpeper advises it for fainting, headaches, stomach complaints and many other things. Oil of lavender is an excellent antiseptic for external use on cuts, burns or bites. Salmons' "Herbal" of 1710 states," is good also against the bitings of serpents, mad dogs and other venomous creatures...". The oil content of plants growing on relatively poor soils will be greater. The oil is also widely used in perfumery. The flowers produce nectar freely this being stored at the base of the flower protected by a ring of hairs. The flower tube is about six millimetres long the perfect length for a hive bee. Still widely used in modern medicine its wide range of properties and versatility making it a useful domestic remedy for minor ailments and also important in professional practice.