French Lavender

Lavandula dentata

Fringed Lavender, Grey Leaved Lavender, Franse Lafentel (Afr.)

1 of 7
Some purple Lavandula dentata flowers on a plant in a garden
1 of 7
France was first to cultivate Lavandula dentata, thus it has the common name French lavender, amongst others! It has a bushy, spreading growth habit and typically grows to a maximum height of 1m and a maximum spread of 1.5m. Leaves are divided into a scalloped arrangement and linear to oblong in shape. This species is valued ornamentally rather than for its practical uses in medicine and the cosmetic industry, of which other species are better suited. Popular with landscapers for its grey-green foliage and sturdy purple blooms. Flowers are purple-blue in colour, semi-scented and borne on spikes above the foliage, up to 5cm long. They have showy purple bracts at the top of the spike.

Planning

Difficulty

Easy

Flowering time

Summer, Autumn, Spring

Fruiting time

Summer, Autumn

Harvesting

Harvest flowers and leaves as needed, especially in summer.

Propagation

Cuttings

Make 5 to 10 cm cuttings during the growing period. Place them in deep seed trays or six packs in a cold frame for two weeks or until rooted.

Layering

Select a long stem and remove 10 - 15 cm of foliage, leaving 10 cm at the tip of the branch. Cover the bare section with moist soil. Once rooted, cut new plants from mother plant and replant.

Seed

Seeds can be sown in Autumn, when ripe. Sow by sprinkling seeds over soil. Keep the soil moist and germination should take two weeks. Thin out too closely germinated plants or replant when they get a bit bigger.

Special features

Attracts useful insects

Attracts bees and butterflies.

Repels harmful insects

Due to the high volatile oil content it repels moths, fleas, flies and mosquitoes.

Drought resistant

This highly drought resistant species can withstand many weeks without water.

Pot plant

Great pot plant as it can flourish in any sized pot in a sunny veranda, stoep or balcony.

Hedge plant

This can be used as a great hedge to create a formal border, or for a loosely planted wild looking hedge for any sunny spot.

Crop rotation

Light Feeder

Attractive flowers

Special features

Origin

Western Europe to North Africa, Spain, Madeira and Cape Verde Islands

Natural climate

Mediterranean

Environment

Light

Full Sun

Soil moisture

Dry

Soil type

Loam, Sand, Gravel, Chalk

Soil PH preference

Neutral, Alkaline, Acid

Frost hardiness

Tender

Uses

Teas

Flavour herbal tea - often used as sweetner in the place of sugar!

Pest deterrent

Keep mice out of cupboards...

Notes

Medicinal, teas, tussie mussies

Personality

Family

Lamiaceae

Flower colour

Purple, Blue

Scent

Strong

Problems

The plant is a natural repellent of many pest species, but you may find Rosemary Beetles, or Sage and Ligurian Leafhoppers. Lavender likes soil dry so is prone to root rot and leaf spot if conditions are too wet. Both can be prevented by letting the lavender bush dry out slightly in between watering.