Lavandula latifolia (Spike Lavender)

Scientific Name

Lavandula latifolia Medik.

Common Names

Spike Lavender, Broadleaved Lavender, Portuguese Lavender

Synonyms 

Lavandula angustifolia, Lavandula cladophora, Lavandula decipiens, Lavandula erigens, Lavandula guinardii, Lavandula hybrida, Lavandula inclinans, Lavandula interrupta, Lavandula major, Lavandula ovata, Lavandula spica var. latifolia

Scientific Classification

Family: Lamiaceae
Subfamily: Nepetoideae
Tribe: Ocimeae
Genus: Lavandula

Flower

Color: Pale lilac
Bloom Time: June to September

Description

Lavandula latifolia is an intensely aromatic shrub that grows up to 2.6 feet (80 cm) tall. Leaves are evergreen, up to 2.4 inches (6 cm) long, and up to 0.3 inches (8 mm) wide. Flowers are pale lilac, produced on up to 2 inches (5 cm) long spikes at the top of slender, up to 20 inches (50) cm long, leafless stems. They appear from June to September, depending on the weather.

Lavandula latifolia - Spike Lavender
Photo via alobacsi.com

Hardiness

USDA hardiness zone 5a to 9a: from −20 °F (−28.9 °C) to 25 °F (−3.9 °C).

How to Grow and Care

As with most plants, your success in growing this coveted plant will depend on what kind of growing conditions you can provide and which varieties you select to grow. Lavender plants will tolerate many growing conditions, but they thrive in warm, well-drained soil and full sun.

Like many plants grown for their essential oils, lean soil will encourage a higher concentration of oils. An alkaline or especially chalky soil will enhance lavender's fragrance.

Although most Lavenders are labeled hardy in USDA Zones 5 – 9, while you can grow Lavender in USDA Hardiness Zone 5, you will unlikely have a Lavender hedge. More realistically, you can expect to have plants that will do well when the weather cooperates and to experience the occasional loss of a plant or two after a severe winter or a wet, humid summer. See more at How to Grow and Care for Lavender.

Origin

Native to the western Mediterranean region, from central Portugal to northern Italy through Spain and southern France.

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