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Lavandula angustifolia

Lavandula angustifolia, Photo: Michael Lahanas

Classification System: APG IV

Superregnum: Eukaryota
Regnum: Plantae
Cladus: Angiosperms
Cladus: Eudicots
Cladus: Core eudicots
Cladus: Asterids
Cladus: Lamiids
Ordo: Lamiales

Familia: Lamiaceae
Subfamilia: Nepetoideae
Tribus: Ocimeae
Subtribus: Lavandulinae
Genus: Lavandula
Subgenus: L. subg. Lavandula
Section: L. sect. Lavandula
Species: Lavandula angustifolia
Subspecies: L. a. subsp. angustifolia – L. a. subsp. pyrenaica

Lavandula angustifolia Mill., Gard. Dict. ed. 8: n.° 2 (1768).

Lavandula angustifolia Moench = Lavandula latifolia Medik.


Lavandula × chaytoriae Upson & S.Andrews
Lavandula × intermedia Emeric ex Loisel.
Lavandula × heterophylla Poir.

Native distribution areas:

Continental: Europe
Regional: Middle Europe
Regional: Southwestern Europe
France, Spain.
Regional: Southeastern Europe
Bulgaria, Italy.
Regional: Eastern Europe
Continental: Africa
Regional: Northern Africa
Continental: Asia-Temperate
Regional: Western Asia
East Aegean Islands.
Continental: Asia-Tropical
Regional: Indian Subcontinent
West Himalaya.
Continental: Pacific
Regional: Northwestern Pacific
Continental: Northern America
Regional: Northeastern U.S.A.
New York, Vermont.
Continental: Southern America
Regional: Northern South America
Note: Grey script indicates introduced occurrences.

References: Brummitt, R.K. 2001. TDWG – World Geographical Scheme for Recording Plant Distributions, 2nd Edition
Primary references

Miller, P. 1768. The Gardeners Dictionary: containing the best and newest methods of cultivating and improving the kitchen, fruit, flower garden, and nursery. Ed. 8, 3 volumes (without pagination), John & Francis Rivington, London. DOI: 10.5962/bhl.title.541 Reference page.

Additional references

Dobignard, A. & Chatelain, C. 2012. Index synonymique de la flore d'Afrique du Nord. Volume 4: Dicotyledoneae: Fabaceae – Nymphaeaceae. Conservatoire et jardin botaniques, Genève, ISBN 978-2-8277-0126-1, 431 pp. PDF Reference page.


Govaerts, R. et al. 2022. Lavandula angustifolia in World Checklist of Selected Plant Families. The Board of Trustees of the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew. Published online. Accessed: 2022 May 20. Reference page.
Hassler, M. 2022. Lavandula angustifolia. World Plants: Synonymic Checklists of the Vascular Plants of the World In: Roskovh, Y., Abucay, L., Orrell, T., Nicolson, D., Bailly, N., Kirk, P., Bourgoin, T., DeWalt, R.E., Decock, W., De Wever, A., Nieukerken, E. van, Zarucchi, J. & Penev, L., eds. 2022. Species 2000 & ITIS Catalogue of Life. Published online. Accessed: 2022 May 20. Reference page. 2022. Lavandula angustifolia. Missouri Botanical Garden. Published online. Accessed: 20 May 2022.
International Plant Names Index. 2022. Lavandula angustifolia. Published online. Accessed: May 20 2022.
USDA, ARS, Germplasm Resources Information Network. Lavandula angustifolia in the Germplasm Resources Information Network (GRIN), U.S. Department of Agriculture Agricultural Research Service. Accessed: 2022 May 20.

Vernacular names
العربية: ضرم ضيق الأوراق, ضرم
azərbaycanca: Sünbüllü lavanda, Ensizyarpaq lavanda
Boarisch: Echder Lavéndel
brezhoneg: Lavand-bihan
català: Espígol, Lavanda
čeština: levandule lékařská
dansk: Ægte Lavendel, Almindelig Lavendel, Lavendel
Deutsch: Echter Lavendel
dolnoserbski: Lawendel
English: common lavender, lavender, true lavender, English lavender, garden lavender, narrow-leaved lavender
español: espliego, alfazema, alhucema, aljucema, espigol, espigola, espigolina, esplego, espliego común, espliego de la hoja angosta, espliego francés, espliego morisco, espligo, espígola, lavanda, lavándula hembra, lavándula macho, tuma
euskara: Izpiliku fin
فارسی: اسطوخودوس انگلیسی
suomi: Tähkälaventeli, Laventeli
français: Lavande des Alpes, Lavande vraie, Lavandula vera, Lavendula vera, Lavande fine
Gaeilge: Lus liath
galego: Esprego
עברית: אזוביון רפואי
hornjoserbsce: Lěwanćik, Požetka, Lawendel
magyar: Közönséges levendula, keskenylevelű levendula
italiano: Lavanda vera, Lavandula vera, Lavandula spica
lietuvių: tikroji levanda
Nederlands: Spijklavendel, Echte lavendel
polski: Lawenda wąskolistna, Bławatka, Czyszczecz, Lawenda wonna, Lawenda lekarska
português: lavanda, lavanda-inglesa, alfazema
română: Lavanda comună, lavanda
русский: Лаванда узколистная, Лаванда колосовая
sicilianu: Lavanna
slovenčina: levanduľa úzkolistá
српски / srpski: Лаванда / Lavanda
svenska: Lavendel
ไทย: ลาเวนเดอร์สามัญ
українська: Лаванда вузьколиста
Tiếng Việt: Oải hương
中文: 狹葉薰衣草, 英國薰衣草, 真薰衣草

Lavandula angustifolia, formerly L. officinalis, is a flowering plant in the family Lamiaceae, native to the Mediterranean (Spain, France, Italy, Croatia etc.). Its common names include lavender, true lavender and English lavender[2] (though not native to England); also garden lavender,[3] common lavender and narrow-leaved lavender.


It is a strongly aromatic shrub growing as high as 1 to 2 metres (3+1⁄2 to 6+1⁄2 ft) tall. The leaves are evergreen, 2–6 centimetres (1–2+1⁄2 inches) long, and 4–6 millimetres (3⁄16–1⁄4 in) broad. The flowers are pinkish-purple (lavender-coloured), produced on spikes 2–8 cm (1–3 in) long at the top of slender, leafless stems 10–30 cm (4–12 in) long.


The species name angustifolia is Latin for "narrow leaf". Previously, it was known as Lavandula officinalis, referring to its medicinal properties.

English lavender is commonly grown as an ornamental plant. It is popular for its colourful flowers, its fragrance, and its ability to survive with low water consumption. It does not grow well in continuously damp soil and may benefit from increased drainage provided by inorganic mulches such as gravel. It does best in Mediterranean climates similar to its native habitat, characterised by wet winters and dry summers. It is fairly tolerant of low temperatures and is generally considered hardy to USDA zone 5.[4] It tolerates acid soils but favours neutral to alkaline soils, and in some conditions it may be short-lived.[5]
AGM cultivars

The following cultivars of L. angustifolia and its hybrids have gained the Royal Horticultural Society's Award of Garden Merit:-[6]

L. × intermedia 'Alba'[7] (large white)
L. angustifolia 'Beechwood Blue' [8]
L. angustifolia 'Hidcote' [9]
L. × intermedia 'Hidcote Giant' [10]
L. angustifolia 'Imperial Gem' [11]
L. angustifolia Little Lottie='Clarmo'[12]
L. angustifolia 'Miss Katherine' [13]
L. angustifolia Miss Muffet='Scholmis'[14]
L. angustifolia 'Nana Alba'[15] (dwarf white)
L. × intermedia Olympia='Downoly' [16]
L × chaytoriae 'Richard Gray'[17]
L. × chaytoriae 'Sawyers'[18]
L. × intermedia 'Sussex'[19]

Dwarf cultivars

Compacta, Folgate, Dwarf Blue, Dwarf White, Hidcote Pink, Hidcote Superior, Munstead, Nana Atropurpurea, Nana Rosea, Sarah, Summerland Supreme, Lady Lavender

'Hidcote Superior', a compact evergreen shrub 40 cm × 45 cm (16 in × 18 in) with fragrant gray-green foliage and deep violet-blue flowers in summer, prefers full sun, well drained soil, low water, hardy to −30 °C (−20 °F), western Mediterranean species
'Munstead' (syn. Dwarf Munstead, Munstead Blue and Munstead Variety) L. angustifolia variety, 30 cm (12 in) tall, having pink-purple to lavender-blue inflorescences that are slightly fragrant,[20] named after Munstead Wood in Surrey, which was the home of Gertrude Jekyll
'Sarah', grows to 15–60 cm (6–24 in), the flowers are petite, as is the plant, used as a short edging, or as a very fragrant addition to the window box, dark violet flowers
'Lady Lavender', grows to 45 cm (18 in), fragrant, gray-green foliage and lavender-blue flowers in summer, prefers full sun, well-drained soil, low water, hardy to −30 °C (–20 °F)

Semi-dwarf cultivars

Bowles Early, Hidcote Variety, Loddon Blue, Martha Roderick, Jean Davis, Twickle Purple, Pink Perfume

'Hidcote' (syn. Hidcote Variety, Hidcote Blue, Hidcote Purple) L. angustifolia variety. 40 to 50 cm (15 in to 20 in) tall, with silver-gray foliage and deep violet-blue inflorescences, named after Hidcote Manor in England as it was cultivated there by Lawrence Johnston
'Jean Davis' 50–60 cm (20–24 in) tall, up to 1 m (3 ft). A pale pink flowered lavender with exceptionally fruity taste
'Pink Perfume' 60 cm × 45 cm (24 in × 18 in)

Giant cultivars

Alba, Blackhouse Purple, Biostos, Bridestowe, Graves, Gray Lady, Gwendolyn Anley, Hidcote Giant, Irene Doyle, Mailette, Middachten

'Hidcote Giant'. A Lavandula × intermedia lavandin. Very vigorous grower (90 to 100 cm; 36–40 in) with a lovely strong fragrance. This has large deep lavender-purple flowers on very long 60 cm (24 in) stems.
'Vera' 75 to 90 cm (30–36 in). Thought to be the original species lavender, harvested for its oil.

Dried Lavandulae flos as used in herbal teas

The flowers and leaves are used as a herbal medicine,[21] either in the form of lavender oil or as a herbal tea, to alleviate symptoms such as anxiety,[22] and difficulty falling asleep.

The flowers are also used as a culinary herb, most often as part of the North American version of the French herb blend called herbes de Provence.

Lavender essential oil, when diluted with a carrier oil, is commonly used as a relaxant with massage therapy. Products for home use, such as lotions, eye pillows (including lavender flowers or the essential oil itself) and bath oils, etc., are also used. Both the petals and the oil are the most popular ingredients in handmade soap.

Dried lavender flowers and lavender essential oil are also used as a prevention against clothing moths, which do not like their scent.

Lavandula angustifolia is included in the Tasmanian Fire Service's list of low flammability plants, indicating that it is suitable for growing within a building protection zone.[23]

Lavandula angustifolia subsp. angustifolia[1]
Lavandula angustifolia subsp. pyrenaica[1]


Lavandula hybrids are referred to as lavandins. Hybrids between L. angustifolia and L. latifolia (spike lavender) are called Lavandula × intermedia. They bloom later than the ordinary English lavenders.
See also



"Lavandula angustifolia". Germplasm Resources Information Network (GRIN). Agricultural Research Service (ARS), United States Department of Agriculture (USDA). Retrieved 2008-04-12.
USDA, NRCS (n.d.). "Lavandula angustifolia". The PLANTS Database ( Greensboro, North Carolina: National Plant Data Team. Retrieved 23 January 2016.
BSBI List 2007 (xls). Botanical Society of Britain and Ireland. Archived from the original (xls) on 2015-06-26. Retrieved 2014-10-17.
USDA Plant Hardiness Zone Map Archived 2012-07-04 at the Wayback Machine. Retrieved on 2008-05-22.
RHS A-Z encyclopedia of garden plants. United Kingdom: Dorling Kindersley. 2008. p. 1136. ISBN 978-1405332965.
"AGM Plants - Ornamental" (PDF). Royal Horticultural Society. July 2017. p. 59. Retrieved 19 March 2018.
"RHS Plant Selector - Lavandula × intermedia 'Alba'". Royal Horticultural Society. Retrieved 1 October 2020.
"Lavandula angustifolia 'Beechwood Blue'". RHS. Retrieved 1 October 2020.
"Lavandula angustifolia 'Hidcote'". RHS. Retrieved 1 October 2020.
"Lavandula × inermedia 'Hidcote Giant'". RHS. Retrieved 1 October 2020.
"Lavandula angustifolia 'Imperial Gem'". RHS. Retrieved 1 October 2020.
"RHS Plantfinder - Lavandula angustifolia Little Lottie = 'Clarmo'". Retrieved 19 March 2018.
"Lavandula angustifolia 'Miss Katherine'". RHS. Retrieved 1 October 2020.
"RHS Plantfinder - Lavandula angustifolia Miss Muffet = 'Scholmis'". Retrieved 19 March 2018.
"RHS Plant Selector - Lavandula angustifolia 'Nana Alba'". Royal Horticultural Society. Retrieved 1 October 2020.
"Lavandula × intermedia Olympia='Downoly'". RHS. Retrieved 1 October 2020.
"RHS Plant Selector - Lavandula × chaytoriae 'Richard Gray'". Royal Horticultural Society. Retrieved 1 October 2020.
"RHS Plant Selector - Lavandula × chaytoriae 'Sawyers'". Royal Horticultural Society. Retrieved 1 October 2020.
"RHS Plant Selector - Lavandula × intermedia 'Sussex'". Royal Horticultural Society. Retrieved 1 October 2020.
Ohio State University: Lavandula Archived 2010-07-15 at the Wayback Machine
"Plants for a Future- Lavandula angustifolia - Mill"., Plants for a Future. Retrieved 22 November 2020.
Kasper, Siegfried; Gastpar, Markus; Müller, Walter E.; Volz, Hans-Peter; Möller, Hans-Jürgen; Schläfke, Sandra; Dienel, Angelika (2014-06-01). "Lavender oil preparation Silexan is effective in generalized anxiety disorder – a randomized, double-blind comparison to placebo and paroxetine". International Journal of Neuropsychopharmacology. 17 (6): 859–869. doi:10.1017/S1461145714000017. ISSN 1461-1457. PMID 24456909.
Chladil and Sheridan, Mark and Jennifer. "Fire retardant garden plants for the urban fringe and rural areas" (PDF). Tasmanian Fire Research Fund.

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