There is nothing more charming than the perfume released by Lavender (Lavandula) when brushing the flowers as you pass! Native to the Mediterranean area, Lavender was already used by the Romans to perfume their baths (Lavender derives from "lavare" in Latin meaning "to be washed") and even by the Egyptians who covered their bodies with the perfume of Lavender unguents.
Fragrance is not the only asset of Lavender: this small shrub is also highly appealing with its masses of soft purple, sky blue or violet flower spikes gracefully swaying in the summer breeze. Enjoying a long flowering season, it is easy to grow, drought and deer tolerant and is also highly versatile as it can be used in a myriad of ways: edging, hedging, accent plant, containers, not to mention its culinary or medicinal uses.
How not to succumb to the urge of growing Lavender? There are over 450 Lavender varieties and finding the most fragrant Lavender plant is not always an easy task. Not all Lavenders are highly scented. Some varieties are wonderful as accent plants, but have little fragrance. Others might not look as spectacular, but exude a rich perfume. To assist you in selecting the right plant, we have prepared this guide, which we hope will be helpful to you.
Most Fragrant Lavender Types
The most fragrant Lavender plants are the Lavandin (Lavandula x intermedia). Several cultivars of English Lavender (Lavandula angustifolia) are also prized for their delightful scent.
- Lavandula x intermedia, also called Lavandin, is a hybrid cross between Lavandula angustifolia and Lavandula latifolia. Cultivars are slightly less hardy than L. angustifolia, and are taller with mounds of gray foliage and long loose spikes. They tolerate hot (dry) weather better than English Lavenders. Cultivars are commercially grown for their high yield of oil which, however, is inferior in quality to L. angustifolia's oil. This Lavender type is great for hedges, rock gardens, as an accent plant and is also used in potpourris or as a culinary herb. Flowering typically occurs from mid to late summer.
List of the most fragrant cultivars of Lavandin Lavenders (Lavandula x intermedia)
- Lavandula angustifolia, also called True Lavender or Common Lavender has long been cultivated for its high quality lavender oil. Cultivars of this species tend to be compact in habit and have grayish green narrow leaves and relatively short compact spikes of ﬂowers. This Lavender type is great for formal or informal edging along walkways, raised wall beds, rock gardens, herb gardens and in mass plantings. Flowering typically occurs from late spring to midsummer.
List of the most fragrant cultivars of English Lavenders (Lavandula angustifolia)
- Finding the most fragrant Lavender cultivars is great. But it is even better if you can enjoy their heavenly fragrance long after their blossoms have faded.
Learn how to preserve the delightful fragrance of your Lavender