Weed of the month: June

LAVENDER

(Lavandula species)

(Photos: E. Cousins; 3 small plants along a walking trail, leaf and flower of French Lavender)

Hardy lavenders are plentiful in our gardens, particularly the English and French varieties. They may have self-seeded in your garden, which is great, but they also self-seed in bushland, with seeds carried on boots, or by wind, etc… not so great! The first photo above shows three healthy seedlings on the edge of a walking trail, over about 1 metre of path.

Easily identified by their aromatic smell and purple flowers these bushy shrubs grow to about knee high, with a dense habit. The leaves of the French Lavender shown are narrow with many lobes on both sides of the centre rib. Another weedy variety, Topped Lavender, has smooth-edged leaves; their flower spikes are topped with some very obvious purple ‘flags’ at the top. Lovely in gardens, with many uses … we just need to make sure that’s where they stay.