April 27, 2007

Spanish Lavender

There is something about having an abundance of lavender in the garden. The silver toned leaves and the pretty purple flowers look beautiful beside my roses. This spring, I placed a lavender plant in between all of my roses. The uniformity appeals to me and it is a good start to developing an under planting scheme for my rose gardens. I chose spanish lavender because it is considered hardy in my climate here in Southern California. I do have one french lavender plant tucked in a shady spot. It is not flourishing as well as the spanish, much to my regret. It's blooms are more delicate and appealing. I haven't given up on it though.

The lavender has another effect: Scent. When guests come to my patio, the first thing that they remark on is the pervasive scent of lavender. Most find it relaxing and calming as I do.

About the only drawback I find with the spanish lavender is that it attracts an large number of bees. At any time of the day, you can find little bumblebees gathers pollen from my lavender. I'm learning to live with the bees as I do with the other wild creatures of my gardens. The bees help my vegetable become pollinated and are a sign of a healthy, organic garden.

I'm planning on harvesting my lavender this year and creating sachets. Since I garden organically, even in my rose beds, the flowers will be pesticide free and perfect for giving a calming fragrance to my closets and drawers.

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