About this Herb:Lavender is native to the mountainous zones of the Mediterranean where it grows in sunny, stony habitats. Today, it flourishes throughout southern Europe, Australia, and the United States. Lavender is a heavily branched short shrub that grows to a height of roughly 60 centimeters (about 24 inches). Its broad rootstock bears woody branches with upright, rod like, leafy, green shoots. A silvery down covers the gray green narrow leaves, which are oblong and tapered, attached directly at the base, and curled spirally.
The oil in lavender's small, blue violet flowers gives the herb its fragrant scent. The flowers are arranged in spirals of 6 - 10 blossoms, forming interrupted spikes above the foliage.
Common Names:Common Lavender, English Lavender, French Lavender, Garden Lavender,
Uses:For cases of insomnia it is best to add a few drops of lavender oil on the pillow. This is also useful for relieving stress, clearing nostrils - a case in which 5 drops of oil are added into a vessel filled with hot water and inhalations are taken. The plant's oil is a good disinfectant of wounds and burns. In case of solar burns a few drops of lavender oil are added into mineral water, which is then used to moisten the affected area. Having antiseptic and anti-inflammatory properties, lavender oil can be used for treating headaches through massaging the temples with a few drops of it.
For treating colds, influenza or fever, lavender vinegar is a very handy remedy. The vinegar is also recommended for rheumatism massages.
The plant is also used in the cosmetic industry, in treatments against acne and in looking after fat complexion. Lavender flowers are used to produce perfumes. Through regular massages, lavender oil strengthens hair roots.
For headaches, anxiety states, rheumatism or distension, the consumption of lavender flower tea or infusion of lavender flowers is recommended.
In housekeeping, lavender is a good insecticide. During the summer time, in the purpose of protection against insects, it is recommended to have a few drops of sunflower oil mixed with a few drops of lavender oil and to massage the exposed parts of the body. Pouches of dry lavender put in the drawers among clothes can keep moths away.
Lavender bath water is prepared like this: dried flowers are tied into small bags of linen. These are filtered in hot water in a bathtub, making the water tone and refresh the bather because of the essential oils, which are being disengaged.
The tonic lotion is realized from one spoonful of lavender flowers covered with 50 ml of white alcohol. The mixture is left to macerate for 10 days at room temperature, it is filtered through linen and then the quantity of boiling and cold water is doubled. The lotion is used in the evening (after cleaning up any make-up) and in the morning.
Cosmetic masks are prepared from a spoonful of wheat bran rubbed in with a few drops of olive oil, a teaspoon of polyfloral honey and a few drops of lavender lotion. The mask is applied once a week in the evening after removing make-up and it is kept on for 20 minutes after which it is washed away with warm water. For cuprous complexions, the bran is replaced by starch.
Applications:Inhalation: Lavender infusion is prepared with 5 teaspoons of dried flowers put in a cup of boiling water. This is used externally for washing and disinfecting wounds and ulcerations. In case of complexions with visible, small, red blood vessels, hot lavender infusion compresses are applied on the affected areas. The infusion obtained from 40g of flowers for one liter of boiling water is used for the rinsing of the hair. The mixture of infusion, oil and tincture, obtained from the concentrated infusion of lavender flowers, a few drops of lavender oil and a few drops of lavender water, is used for massages, thus bringing about a state of comfort.
Tea: Lavender tea is prepared with two teaspoons of flowers to a cup of boiled water. It is to be drunk hot and sweetened with honey. It is good against stress and headaches. Concentrated tea, obtained light wounds.
Tincture: Lavender tincture is prepared out of 200g of dried lavender flowers for one liter of alimentary alcohol and half a liter of distilled water. It is left to macerate for 4 days with occasional stirrings. The mixture is then filtered and it is used in various throat affections or as mouthwash.
Oil: Lavender oil is obtained from 20g of dried lavender flowers mixed with 20ml of alcohol. The mixture is put into a small jar, then 200ml of olive oil is added after which it is stirred well. It is boiled in a steam bath for two hours while being stirred from time to time. After the vessel is taken out of the steam bath, it is left covered for 2 days and then filtered through agauze. It is then left in a cool place, in the dark. Oils are applied once a week, in the evening, after cleaning the complexion, before going to sleep, being left like that for 20 minutes after which it is washed away with warm water.