Best Lavenders for Drying, Cooking, and Creating Sachets
by High Country Gardens
Best Lavender Varieties For Special Uses
In addition to their ornamental use in water-wise (xeric) landscapes, lavender plants are also used for other purposes such as lavender oil production, for dried flower products (such as sachets, wreaths, and wands) and as a culinary spice.
In this respect, not all varieties are the same.
Here are my recommendations for these different categories selected from the cultivars grown by High Country Gardens.
Best Lavender Cultivars For Lavender Oil Production
This is of primary concern to commercial growers who grow lavender flowers from which to distill lavender oil, based on the weight yield of flowers per plant and oil content of flowers.
This is a very subjective recommendation as different cooks will have different opinions as to what tastes best. Many French hybrids have an overabundance of camphor-like scent to their oil which can be overpowering in a recipe.
‘Royal Velvet’ English Lavender (Lavandula angustifolia Royal Velvet) is very showy in bloom. It is covered with long stemmed, dark navy blue and lavender flower spikes. The 3 to 4-inch long flower spikes, which are much longer than ‘Hidcote’, hold their dark color superbly as a dried flower.
Thumbelina Leigh is a robust dwarf growing English variety with plump, deep lavender-blue flower spikes, and a strong, sweet fragrance. Maturing to a height of about 15 inches, it is one of the most compact cultivars in cultivation.
Lavandula angustifolia Vera is an outstanding heirloom English Lavender known for its sweetly fragrant oil, dark lavender-blue flower spikes, and compact growth habit. Our selection of 'Vera' is also the most cold hardy variety of English Lavender.
Lavandula angustifolia Wee One is a special dwarf English Lavender that blooms with a wonderful display of short blue flower spikes only 10" tall. It is the most compact Lavender cultivar in cultivation.
Mitcham Gray is a rarely offered cultivar of English lavender similar to 'Hidcote Superior' with a compact growth habit, dark lavender-blue flower spikes, and gray-green foliage. But it is a faster grower than the slow-to-mature 'Hidcote Superior'.
Buena Vista is a compact English lavender with deep blue bi-colored flower spikes. A hard-to-find, twice blooming cultivar flowers in late spring and again in September. Sweetly fragrant flowers and foliage. Drought resistant/drought tolerant plant (xeric).
This exclusive HCG selection of English lavender has some of the darkest colored flowers youll ever see making it a stand-out in your garden! Faster growing than other dark colored Lavender selections like 'Hidcote'.