With the exception of nasturtium, there is no other flower so classic and childhood-evoking for me than the small, delicate, cotton-like clusters of lavender, in their mist of dusky, lullaby purple tinged with the fairytale glow of old moon-silver. They have been grown in several spots in both our gardens for as long as I can remember, and as gentle as they are, they persevere angelically through the seasons, a reminder of their untouchable softness and impermeable purity.
Their scent is both deep and elevating, like love or dreams. It is refreshing and liberating yet holds you to its comforting allure, much like watching the irresistible rhythm of the soothing sea. This all-encompassing, divine duality of lavender can be explained by a chemical characteristic that’s known as adaptogenic. This means that lavender is a special balancer whereby in small concentrations its essential oil gives a sense of blissful calm, and in higher concentrations it enlivens and uplifts the spirits. Even lavender’s hue, which is composed of celestial blue mixed with earthy maroon, is a reflection of its majestic breadth of wonderful properties.
The quality of lavender’s aroma has a woody but tender rusticity that reminds me of nostalgic farms and mild lambs. Its fanciful floral element has a dewiness that evokes a lovely meadow beneath the changing skies of early morning light, and a gentle dreaminess like the lunar linen of a heavenly pillow. The strength and grace of lavender has a beautiful, gentlemanly masculinity to it, and I can imagine the flower’s softly earthy aspect would make it charming among the sweet spices of cinnamon and star anise in enchanting cake or biscuit bakes.