If there’s one herb that evokes feelings of serenity, it’s lavender. When lavender is in bloom on a sunny day, you’ll find the heady aroma uplifting and calming at the same time. Lavender makes me smile!
Lavender makes a lovely container herb. Like rosemary, lavender doesn’t like wet feet but this perennial member of the mint family does love lots of sun and good drainage. Harvest the flowers just as they start to open and pluck leaves anytime.
Aroma therapists use lavender essential oil to relieve mild cases of anxiety and depression and to create a peaceful state of mind. It’s also one of the few essential oils I know that can be directly applied to the skin for cuts, bites, and blemishes. A few sprigs of lavender into a steaming bath immediately make me calmer.
Lavender leaves and flowers are delicious added to lemonade and teas. Let infuse and strain before using. Herbes de Provence is a famous blend with lavender.
HERBES DE PROVENCE
Typically used in regional French cooking, this herb blend is difficult to find in stores. Seafood, tomato, pork dishes, lamb and vegetables all benefit from this blend.
Use dry herbs. Mix together:
2 tablespoons thyme
1 tablespoon marjoram
2 teaspoons each rosemary and savory
1 teaspoon lavender flowers or leaves
1/2 teaspoon fennel seeds.
Store in cool, dark place.