Evergreen grayish-starry pubescent plant of the Libaceae family. Semi-shrub with many branched stems, 20-60 cm tall. The leaves are opposite, sessile, linear or linear-lanceolate, with folded down edges. The flowers are irregular, collected in 6-10-flowered rings, forming apical intermittent spike-shaped inflorescences; corolla is blue or purple, less often – white or pink. The fruit consists of four nuts. Blooms in July – August.
Distribution . Spike lavender comes from the Mediterranean. On the territory of Ukraine, mainly in the Crimea, it is cultivated as an essential oil, less often as an ornamental plant.
Procurement and storage . Flowers (Flores Lavandulae), rarely grass (Herba Lavandulae) are used to make medicines. Inflorescences are cut 1-1.5 weeks after the beginning of flowering, tied into bunches, quickly dried and threshed (separate the flowers from the stems). The yield of dry flowers is 14-15%. Lavender oil (Oleum Lavandulae) is obtained from freshly picked flowers. Flowers and inflorescences, as raw materials for obtaining lavender oil, are included in the pharmacopoeias of 16 countries of the world. The grass is harvested during the flowering period of the plant. Flowers and grass are not allowed in the pharmacy.
Chemical composition . All parts of the plant contain essential oil (stems – 0.19%, leaves – 0.37%, inflorescences – 0.8-1.2%), which includes linalool and its complex esters with various acids, coumarins, guerniarin, ursolic acid, tannins.
Pharmacological properties and use. Lavender oil, which has antiseptic properties, is used to treat purulent wounds and gangrene, to improve the smell of various medicinal forms that are used externally. For rheumatism and neuralgic pains, lavender oil diluted in alcohol is used as an irritant that causes blood flow to the skin. Lavender oil is also used in aromatherapy. The Department of Medical Botany of the Central Botanical Garden of Ukraine has developed compositions of volatile biologically active substances of higher plants (anise, lavender, mint, rose, sage, etc.), which are recommended for use in order to optimize the environment of closed spaces and increase the efficiency of people whose work is related with constant nervous and emotional tension. Dosed introduction of highly active phytoncide compounds into the air by the Phyton device causes the death of diphtheria bacteria, streptococci and pyogenic staphylococci by 80-97%, improves the functioning of the nervous and cardiovascular system, reduces fatigue, and increases the reactivity of the human body. Aromatherapy can be considered as a component of the new scientific direction of phytodesign. Lavender oil is widely used in the pharmaceutical and perfume industry. Lavender flowers and grass are used in traditional medicine as a mild sedative and antispasmodic agent for migraines, neurasthenia, nervous palpitations, pain in the gastrointestinal tract, as a diuretic and bile-thinning agent. The flowers are part of mixtures used for the treatment of nervous, cardiovascular, gastric, kidney and other diseases. Dry inflorescences of the plant are used in everyday life as a means of repelling moths.
Medicinal forms and applications .
Internally – infusion of flowers (20 g of raw materials per 400 ml of boiling water, infuse until cool, filter) half a glass 3-4 times a day;
two tablespoons of a mixture of lavender flowers, peppermint leaves (20 g each), chamomile flowers and rhizomes with valerian roots (30 g each) are infused for 15 minutes in a glass of boiling water and drunk during the day with insomnia;
one tablespoon of a mixture of lavender flowers, peppermint leaves and true rosemary, primrose roots, rhizomes with medicinal valerian roots (20 g each) is brewed with a glass of boiling water, infused until cooled and drunk 2 glasses a day for migraines.
Externally – oil infusion (1 part of flowers to 5 parts of sunflower oil, infuse for 1-2 months) for rubbing with sprains and bruises (as a pain reliever);
an infusion of three tablespoons of a mixture of lavender flowers (10 g), common thyme grass (30 g), real rosemary leaves (10 g), medicinal chamomile flowers (30 g) in 0.5 l of boiling water is used for eczema lotions;
200-300 g of a mixture of lavender grass, creeping thyme and medicinal sage, peppermint leaves, chamomile flowers, rhizomes of yarrow in a ratio of 2:8:5:5:5:5, infuse for 15 minutes in 2-3 liters of boiling water, strain and pour into the bath (water temperature 32-40°, duration of the procedure – 30 minutes; has a calming effect, disinfects and tones the skin).