Lavandula angustifolia [lavender or English lavender, though not native to England; also common lavender, true lavender, narrow-leaved lavender], formerly Lavandula officinalis, is a flowering plant in the family Lamiaceae, native to the western Mediterranean, primarily the Pyrenees and other mountains in northern Spain.
It is a strongly aromatic shrub growing as high as 1 to 2 metres [3.3 to 6.6 ft] tall. The leaves are evergreen, 2–6 centimetres [0.79–2.36 in] long, and 4–6 millimetres [0.16–0.24 in] broad. The flowers are pinkish-purple [lavender-coloured], produced on spikes 2–8 cm [0.79–3.15 in] long at the top of slender, leafless stems 10–30 cm [3.9–11.8 in] long.
English lavender is commonly grown as an ornamental plant. It is popular for its colourful flowers, its fragrance and its ability to survive with low water consumption.
The following cultivars have gained the Royal Horticultural Society’s Award of Garden Merit: ‘Alba’ [large white], ‘Beechwood Blue’, ‘Hidcote’, ‘Imperial Gem’, ‘Miss Katherine’, ‘Nana Alba’ [dwarf white], ‘Richard Gray’, ‘Sawyers’, ‘Sussex’.