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Types of Lavender

As the name suggests, lavender is a beautiful flower with an attractive color. Lavender is used for many purposes which include decorative, medicinal, culinary, and aromatherapy. Lavender flowers come in many different shapes, sizes, and colors depending on the variety.  If you are planning on cultivating lavender flowers, it is important to first choose from the types of lavender based on your requirements.

Lavender flowers can be shaded bright and vivid or light, and they can be small or large depending on the type. In fact, lavender flowers need not always be in lavender color! They even come in yellow, pink and white. Different types of lavender flowers are used for different purposes.

All types of lavender plants prefer an open, bright, and sunny garden area. They grow the best on soil that is well drained. They do not attract pests and are usually tolerant to drought.

English Lavender
One of the most popular lavender plants grown today is English lavender. This plant features flowers that are medium purple in color.  English lavender is a sturdy perennial plant. They grow to a height of up to three feet. If your aim is to use lavender for craft and culinary purposes, then English lavender is ideal for you. They come with a fragrance which is strong and predominantly used for cosmetic and medicinal purposes. A lot of gardens use a smaller version of the English Lavender flowers for edging purposes.

French Lavender
French lavender flowers are not very bright violet in color. They are subdued and are predominantly used for decorative purposes as they do not feature a particular fragrance. Plants grow to a height of three feet and features leaves that are serrated.

Spanish Lavender
Spanish lavender flowers have upright petals and are shaped like a pie-cone. They are deep purple in color and grow predominantly in humid climates such as in Northern Africa and the Mediterranean. Spanish lavender plants don�t grow very high � about two feet.  They are a favorite with bees.  They look very attractive with elegant hues and add beauty to any garden, especially if complemented with marigolds.

These are some of the types of lavender found today. The most popular lavender species sport vivid purple flowers which grow in plants that have spear shaped leaves. The foliage is sharp and silver green in colour.

Lavender is also classified commercially under the labels of true lavender, spike lavender and lavandin.

True lavender
True lavender is predominantly used for aromatherapy and provides relaxation, healing, calming, soothing and naturalizing effect on the person using it. Flowers of this variety of lavender are shaped like a barrel, stems are crooked and leaves are narrow and short.

Spike lavender
Spike lavender is one of the types of lavender which yields almost three times the essential oil as compared to the other varieties. The oil smells like eucalyptus and this type of lavender is often used in manufacture of disinfectants, soaps, deodorants, room sprays and insect repellants.

Lavandin is a hybrid which is actually a cross between spike and true lavender. It is also referred to as the Dutch lavender. Flowers of lavandin are very beautiful and attractive with vibrant colors. Flowers of these types of lavender are therefore used for decorations and in potpourris.

Lavender is thus a wonderful herb which is used for various purposes. All types of lavender are grown commercially all over the world.