Magic of Herbs - Lavender

This Beautiful Plant can be put to so many uses when it's harvested, but there can be nothing more pleasant and relaxing on a Summer evening than the smell of Lavender! Crush a few of it's Flowers, (but please ask the Plant politely first, and pick them gently!), and inhale the scent, and you will almost instantly feel relaxed.

The Women in my family all carried Lavender sticks in their handbags as an instant cure for headaches, and my Gran always had a supply of Lavender bags to be placed in the drawer with your clothes or under your pillow.

It's name comes from the Latin word lavare meaning, 'to wash', since Roman times it has been added to bath water, not only for cleanliness but for relaxation. In ancient times it was used for mumification in Arabia.

And a little online research found me/ this:
http://www.complete-herbal.com/details/lavender.html

"And in 1630 when the Great Plague swept through Toulouse, France. Four thieves ransacked the city without contracting the disease; when finally caught, a judge decided to commute their death sentences, if they revealed the secret ingredients to the mysterious decoction that gave them immunity from the disease. The formula now known as the“The 4 Thieves Vinegar” was a combination of thyme, lavender,rosemary and sage steeped in vinegar. One hundred years later the disease struck again in Marseilles. Herbalists then added garlic as thefifth ingredient. In the 19th century a French distiller of vinegar patented the formula and marketed this elixir to nuns, priests and doctors. “Drink some on an empty stomach in the morning. In London around the same time, during the Black Death, it was suggested that a bunch of lavender fastened to each wrist would protect the wearer against the deadly disease. This story could have some validity as the plague was transmitted by fleas, which lavender is known to repel."

Quotes

Culpeper, 1652: "This is so well known, being an inhabitant in almost every garden, that it needeth no description."

Salmon 1710: "it is also good against the bitings of serpents, mad-dogs and other venomous creature, being given inwardly and applied poultice-wise to the parts wounded. The spirituous tincture of the dried leaves or seeds, if prudently given, cures hysterik
fits though vehement and of long standing."

Dr. Fernie, Herbal Simples: "By the Greeks the name Nardus is given to Lavender, from Naarda, a city of Syria near the Euphrates, and many persons call the plant "Nard." St. Mark mentions this as Spikenard, a thing of great value.... In Pliny's time, blossoms of the Nardus sold for a hundred Roman denarii (or L.3 2s. 6d.) the pound. This Lavender or Nardus was called Asarum
by the Romans, because it was not used in garlands or chaplets. It was formerly
believed that the asp, a dangerous kind of viper, made Lavender its habitual
place of abode, so that the plant had to be approached with great caution."

Gerard: "It profiteth them much that have the palsy if they be washed with the distilled water from the Lavender flowers, or are annointed
with the oil made from the flowers and olive oil in such manner as oil of roses
is used."

and so much more that there just isn't room for here! 

So let's just take a look at some of it's uses:

CULINARY

It can be used with Rosemary, Sage, Mint and Cinnamon in meat and cheese dishes.

It is used in Spice mixtures such as Herbes de Provence

It can be mised with vinegar, put in stews and mixed with cooking oils

It can be used to flavor Jams, Iced cream and Jellies

Flowers can be crystalized for cake decoration

And of course the Nectar results in special Honey.

HOUSEHOLD

Useful for Potpourris

Flowers can be used in baths, to scent clothes and deter moths

It is an insect repellent

Stalks can be used as incense or scented firelightes

COSMETIC

Lavender Essential Oil is used in baths, as a final hair rinse, in lotions, soaps, and lip balms. 
It is said to aid anti - ageing because it speeds up cell renewal. 

MEDICINAL

Most well known for relaxing, calming and as a sedative.
Also cures headaches, insect bites, throat infections, menstrual cramps, acne, rheumatic pain and inflamation.

MAGICKAL

Used in Love and Money Spells

Purification Rituals

Protection

Aids Clairvoyance

Gender - Masculine

Planet - Mercury

Zodiac - Gemini, Virgo

Element - Air


Where would we be without it?!