Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Herbal Homekeeping ~ Lavender Love

Lavender is one of the best loved herbs, and for good reason.
Lavender, named by the Romans from the latin- lavare, meaning to wash, is used for many cleansing purposes.  Used in the bath or laundry, lavender gives a soothing, clean fragrance.

Lavender sachets or bags- a small pillow filled with dried lavender, is a pleasant way to scent linens or clothing.  A lavender sachet can be laid between folded towels or sheets to scent them and shoo away pests like moths.  A sachet tucked into the lingerie drawer gives a sweet fragrance to your clothing.
Another use for the lavender sachet is to toss one in the clothes dryer to scent the laundry.  When using them for this purpose, I add a few drops of lavender essential oil to the dried herb before stitching the sachet closed. When the fragrance starts to fade, I just add a few more drops of essential oil to the outside of the bag and let it sit for a few moments before tossing it in with the next load of laundry.

Linen water is another homekeeping item that is frequently scented with lavender.
Here's my recipe for a very simple linen water-
Mix 1 cup distilled water with 20 drops lavender essential oil in a spray bottle.
Use to freshen linens or when ironing.
Some people add vodka or other alcohol to this mixture, but I have not found the need to do so.
I use mine up quickly, so it doesn't have time to get old or otherwise funky.
It also makes a sweet smelling room spray.

Below is a photo of a small lavender harvest from last summer.  Last year was a pitiful garden year due to extreme drought in my part of the country; but even so, the lavender bloomed off and on and I was able to harvest a few stems for drying.  
From the dusty shelves in my photo, I see that I need to find a recipe for lavender furniture polish!


There are many, many uses for lavender, and I'll share more with you next week.  

Do you grow lavender?  If so, what variety is your favorite?


If you have a favorite recipe or tip for using lavender, write a blog post about it.
I will add a link-up to next week's post and we can have our own online Lavender Festival!

Blessings,
Catherine

5 comments:

  1. I don't grow lavender (city living!) but I do hear there's a great cold hardy strain called Munsy, so one of these days when we "hit the farm" that will be one to experiment with!

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  2. What a good idea about lavender water! Must try that.

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  3. I've nominated you for the Versatile Blogger award. Come by my blog for the details!

    Loretta

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  4. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

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  5. Cheryl, I haven't much experience with herbs; some cilantro, mint and basil. How long before lavender can be harvested? Does it spread like mint?

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