Lavender: Uses Beyond Scent (+ Mild Rant)


photo of white pink and yellow ceramic mug and saucer

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So because I have a love of herbs and herbal flowers, specifically tea flowers, imagine my surprise seeing lavender used in Tea. But not just any lavender, there are specific types of lavenders out there. I’ve specifically seen English Lavender and the dwarf variety and French Lavender used to make tea which is then also used in biscuits and yoghurt. Biscuits such as Macaroons. Seriously go check it out. Lavender Macaroons. They look amazing!

My mind was blown the first time and I discovered it a few years ago. It’s not anything new by any means. But it did get me thinking.

With the increase of misinformation and misinformed flower identification and an increase in false “Health Properties” claims, how do you really know if it’s safe? One thing that troubles me is when people buy dried lavender aimed at use in sachets for moth repelant as an all natural scented bag for pest problems. There are pesticides or preservatives on them. And often there something coated on it when it says they aren’t. This is a problem when people buy cheap lavender refills rather than tea grade to save a few bucks.

If you plan to use ANY dried flower, make sure it’s cooking grade or comes from a tea store. It’s no secret that flower nurseries and big stores like Bunnings often mislabel plants and you don’t always have the right breed when you buy it. You’re best off doing loads of research and get solid information firsthand from reputable sources and then growing the correct species yourself. Lavender doesn’t take long and a simple well looked after large pot plant lavender can provide quite a bountiful harvest of flowers.

With these thoughts in mind it keeps reminding me of the time I got the wrong plant because of mislabelling. I had a moment of great frustration with buying Aloe vera. I waited for it to bloom because I was suspicious of it’s breed. Good thing I did because I bought it under the impression that it was safe to eat. I did an incredible amount of research and the one Bunnings was selling as edible it was in fact, topical only and mislabelled, encouraging ingestible uses.

Not an uncommon occurrence. Same happens with their flowers. They also don’t check or control cross pollination housing everything in the one area and occasionally end up selling hybrid plants without labelling it’s a hybrid. Unfortunately like some dog breeds, you only work out it’s been crossed with something else when it reaches maturity.

So I started buying my plants from a reputatble nursery in Queensland. A whole other state away from mine if you’re wondering. The shipping is VERY fast and they arrive safe and sound. I give the boxes to my worms and every plant I have bought from them never dies when I plant them. A HUGE deal because everything I buy from Bunnings no matter how hard I try, it dies or dies of shock easily. I’ve tried every suggestion but it’s hit or miss. Herb Cottage, the site I buy from, I never have this issue. The plants are that healthy and strong.

I bought most of my plants for them recently and unlike other sights, Herb Cottage includes cullinary use information as well as historical uses if they have it and if it’s accurate. I have yet to see them sell English Lavender but I did find a packet of seeds to grow from. Just been waiting for the right time to sow them. I want to try homemade lavender tea one day but not without more research. There are not just a lot of species, but I’m kind of horrified that big chain stores are selling salvia plants as Lavender. I must admit at first glance the mistake would be easy to make especially to a novice gardener but mislabelling can be so dangerous. Especially with an increased interest in natural homemade food and herbal teas with a “Do it yourself” attitude. It reminds me of that poor girl who thought she had an aloe vera leaf but it was agave and she was rushed to hospital.

All rambling aside, Lavender is one of my top favourtie flowers for uses other than scent. One such thing I like is brewing a tea like consistency as a hair rinse just to simply scent my hair. Not for any make shift hair treatment, just for the colour and the smell. It’s lovely. I also love them in bath bombs and soaps or floating loose in the bath. I love the light purple tinting. It’s just nice and fun.

But I want to know so much more about lavender tea. One such recipe that has caught my eye is Lavender Lemonade. It looks divine!

As I research it more and get more into some home photography I might revisit this post with a follow up one day.

 

 

4 thoughts on “Lavender: Uses Beyond Scent (+ Mild Rant)

  1. Omgosh I need to try this lavender lemonade recipe! Also good thing you waited before trying the aloe! That could have been bad if you’d eaten some when it wasn’t safe! It is really tough these days to find the correct information about plants and food, esp with all the diets and health blogs out there!

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