“Forgiveness is the smell that Lavender gives out when you tread on it” – Mark Twain
Parts used: Flowers
History: Lavender is best known for its aromatic qualities and its fragrance is commonly used in perfumes, toiletries and cosmetics. It has been used for Centuries to help with sleep, nervousness, tension, headaches, muscle spasms and indigestion. It was popular during the Victorian Era, and ladies carried lavender oil or water to sniff in case they felt faint. It was prescribed to “reduce the tremblings and passions of the heart, and faintings and soothings”. Herbalist John Parkinson (1640) quoted Lavender of being “especiall good use for all griefes and paines of the head and brain”.
Spiritual/cleansing benefits: Love, protection, peace and purification, counteracts the evil eye.
Astrology: Virgo (August 23 to September 22; Ruled by Mercury)
Traditional/Medicinal uses: Lavender is still prescribed for its relaxing, soothing medicinal properties. It is strengthening to the nervous system and is a valuable herb used for treating nervous tension/exhaustion, anxiety, insomnia and restlessness. Lavender can help to alleviate irritability and elevate mood in depression. It also beneficial for headaches and tension, particularly when caused by stress.
Lavender is an effective remedy for abdominal complaints such as irritable bowel syndrome, nausea, flatulence and indigestion as it helps to relax intestinal spasms and soothe pain.
Externally Lavender can help to ease aches and pains and is effective for grazes, burns, eczema and insect bites due to its antibacterial and anti-inflammatory action. It is also helpful to prevent scarring.
How to use:
Culinary uses: Lavender Buds can be used to season meats such as fish, chicken and pork and combines well with basil, fennel, marjoram, oregano, parsley, rosemary, tarragon, and thyme – also known as Herbs de Provence. Fresh lavender flowers can be added to salads. Lavender buds make a comforting hot chocolate by bringing your choice of milk (1/1/2 cups per serve) and 1 teaspoon of buds to the boil gently, then adding dark chocolate and vanilla extract to taste. It can be sweetened with honey if preferred.