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Herb Spotlight - Lavender

Herb Spotlight - Motherwort - Sun God Medicinals

Lavender (Lavandula angustifolia)  

Family: Lamiaceae

Part Used: Flower

Flavor/Aroma: Bitter

Energetics: Drying, Cooling


Herbal Actions: 

Hypotensive, Emmenagogue, Carminative, Analgesic, Antidepressant, Antitoxic, Vermifuge, Sedative, Nervine, Diuretic, Anticonvulsive, Rubefacient, Antimicrobial, Stimulent, Cholagogue, Antiseptic, Vulnery, Atonic

Overview:

Lavender is often referred to as the herb of love, protection and purification. Its intoxicating aroma has been revered as a go to headache reliever for centuries, and is thought to bring peace and tranquility to all those experiencing the floral scent.

Botany:

Lavender is a woody, perennial herb that is native to the eastern European regions, along with northern Africa, and the Mediterranean. It bears narrow, finger-like leaves of grey-ish blue hue, that are heavily scented with a floral aroma. Lavender blooms purple, spike shaped flowers atop thin, yet sturdy, stalks

Cultivation and Harvesting:

Lavender grows best in full sun and in drier, well-drained soil types. It grows well in rocky areas, and is best grown from cuttings of a mature plant. The ideal time to harvest Lavender is in the late summer and into the fall months, before the annual frost.  

Southern Oregon Cultivation:

Lavender is commonly found throughout the Southern Oregon area in gardens and in wild zones alike. There are several Lavender farms in the Rouge Valley, and their fragrance can be sensed from miles away. Lavender produces vibrant, aromatic blooms that attract pollinators from far and wide and supports our local ecosystem.

History and Folklore:

Lavender was a symbol of peace, and was used to bring blessings to newborns and their homes. The flower was used in many ceremonies involving love and protection. It was thought that burning lavender would call upon fairies, spirites, and elves. Lavender was used by the ancient Greeks in baths, perfumes, and for its culinary uses.²  

The Egyptians used Lavender during the mummification process thousands of years ago.

The Greeks were noted to have used a mixture of Lavender, other herbs, and Vinegar to protect themselves against the Great Plague of 1665.¹

Modern Applications:

Lavender is indicated to use in a variety of nervous system irritations including headaches and anxiety, depression, and to relieve stress. It is used to support gastric upsets, as an aphrodisiac, and to flavor culinary creations. Lavender contains high amounts of volatile oils that contribute to its thymoleptic, antispasmodic, and anti insomnia abilities, specifically when used in an aromatherapy application.³ It is also used to remedy fainting spells and excessive dizziness. Topically it can be used to treat minor burns and skin irritations.4

Uses and Preparations:

Dried Herb Tea Preparation: 

1 teaspoon of flowers per cup of water, allow to infuse for 15 minutes before consuming.

Using a reusable tea bag or tea ball, immerse the loose dried herbs into boiling water and allow to steep for 5-10 minutes, preferably covered, in order to release the maximum amount of herbal goodness. Some herbal tea can carry a strong flavor. We recommend organic honey as a sweetener which preserves the beneficial herbal compounds. 

Tincture: 

2-4 mL up to 4 times a day, and more as needed.

Some herbal tinctures can have a strong flavor on their own. Adding your tincture to a glass of 6-8oz of water is one easy way to help, should you wish to dilute the flavor.  

Dosage:

It is important to remember that some bodies may react differently than others when using herbal products. Our recommended dosages are designed to be an average dosage only. If you have specific concerns about the dosage amount or interaction with other medication, please consult with your doctor or health care practitioner prior to using our products.  

Precautions:

Safe for tonic use. We recommend consulting with your practitioner if you are pregnant, or plan to become pregnant, or if you are using any other medications.

References:

  1. Lavandula. (n.d.). www.henriettes-herb.com/eclectic/kings/lavandula.html 
  2. English Lavender. (n.d.). www.mountianroseherbs.com/products/lavender-english-flowers/profile 
  3. Bekhradi, R., Hosseini, FS., Raisi, Z. (April 22, 2014). Effects of lavender inhalation on the symptoms of primary dysmenorrhea and the amount of menstrual bleeding: A randomized clinical trial. www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/24731891 
  4. Herbal Medicine: Expanded Commission E. (n.d.). Retrieved from http://cms.herbalgram.org/expandedE/Lavenderflower.html  

For educational purposes only. This information has not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This information is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.