Lavender: The Grower's Guide

Lavender: The Grower's Guide

by Virginia McNaughton

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For lovers of this exquisite plant, everything you need to know is now at your fingertips, covering more than 200 lavender species and varieties.See more details below


For lovers of this exquisite plant, everything you need to know is now at your fingertips, covering more than 200 lavender species and varieties.

Editorial Reviews

Fine Gardening
"For lavender enthusiasts, this book serves as an authoritative botanical reference ... a handsome, worthwhile, well–researched book."

—Lynn Hunt, Fine Gardening, July/August 2001

The Washington Post
"The definitive text on this easy–to–grow plant."
—Joel M. Lerner, Washington Post, April 28, 2001
Country Living Gardener
"Serious gardeners are certain to value this comprehensive reference."
Country Living Gardener, January/February 2001
An experienced grower gives instructions for the home gardener and detailed information for the professional grower on the care and propagation of lavender, and offers physical and historical descriptions of some 200 lavender cultivars. There is also information on the botany of lavender and its nomenclatural history. Some 185 color photos are arranged to compare and contrast the different sections, species, and cultivars within the genus. McNaughton manages a lavender business and is responsible for the national reference collection of lavender for the Herb Foundation of New Zealand. Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (

Product Details

Timber Press, Incorporated
Publication date:
Product dimensions:
7.60(w) x 9.20(h) x 0.60(d)

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Read an Excerpt

Dioscorides, a Greek physician, described lavender as having slender twigs and hair similar to thyme, only longer. The Greeks apparently used mainly L. stoechas medicinally, making wines and vinegars from the spikes and foliage. The Romans used it to scent their baths and relieve their aching limbs. It may be that the Romans distinguished between L. stoechas and L. vera, using the first for wine-making and the second for their exotic perfumes. However this is not clear.

It is generally assumed that the Romans introduced lavender to England but it may well have been introduced earlier. No records exist to confirm this. During the Dark Ages, monks recorded their herbal knowledge and lavender thrived in their monastery gardens. Abbes Hildegarde (1098 — 1180), a learned female botanist, made a study of lavender and wrote of her findings. Subsequently herbalists such as Turner and Gerard (16th century) attributed lavender with an ability to heal anything from colds and headaches to limb paralysis and neurosis, as well as with use as both a tonic and a laxative. Lavendula stoechas was referred to as 'Sticadore' and was one of the main ingredients of 'Four Thieves vinegar' used to combat the plague during the Middle Ages. The spikes of L. stoechas were still being used medicinally until the middle of the eighteenth century. Even today in France and Spain, fresh spikes of L. stoechasand L. dentata are suspended in water in closed bottles placed in the sun, for use as a haemostatic or for cleansing wounds.

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