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LAVANDULA angustifolia 'Irene Doyle'

Image of Lavandula angustifolia 'Irene Doyle'

Mark A. Miller

Family

Lamiaceae

Botanical Name

LAVANDULA angustifolia 'Irene Doyle'

Plant Common Name

English Lavender, Irene Doyle Lavender, Two Season Lavender

Special Notice

This entry has yet to be reviewed and approved by L2G editors.

General Description

English lavender is an aromatic, evergreen garden herb that thrives in summer heat and dry weather. It is technically a subshrub, which means it behaves like a perennial but develops woody stems over time. This Western European species is more tolerant of moister growing conditions, which is why it is commonly grown in England, though it still thrives in heat and drought. It develops a rounded, bushy habit and has fragrant, linear leaves of pale gray-green that turn steely gray in winter.

Lavender blooms in late spring to midsummer, producing many slender, upright stems topped with spikes of densely clustered, violet-blue flowers. The highly fragrant blooms are attractive to bees, butterflies and other insect pollinators. They turn brown as they age and should be removed once spent to keep the plants looking tidy.

Growing success depends on light levels and soil drainage; full sun and sharply drained soil are essential. Moist winter weather is especially detrimental and can lead to root and stem rot and eventually plant death. Its stems become quite woody and coarse looking over time. Plants of this age and constitution should be pruned back quite severely in spring. This will encourage a new flush of foliage, which will keep plants looking young and fresh.

This is the best form of lavender for cutting because of its long-stemmed flowers. Its flowers have been used in perfumes, poultices and potpourris for centuries, so this evergreen is a staple plant for the herb garden. If preparing the blooms for potpourri and sachets, cut them while fresh and hang them to dry. English lavender is also a fine choice for edging, containers and sunny dry spots where fragrance and summer color are needed. It also makes a fine container plant.

Characteristics

  • USDA Hardiness Zone

    5 - 8

  • Sunset Zone

    2a, 2b, 3a, 3b, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24

  • Plant Type

    Herb

  • Sun Exposure

    Full Sun

  • Height

    1'-4' / 0.3m - 1.2m

  • Width

    2'-4' / 0.6m - 1.2m

  • Bloom Time

    Late Spring, Early Summer, Summer

  • Native To

    Western Europe, Mediterranean

Growing Conditions

  • Soil pH

    Neutral, Alkaline

  • Soil Drainage

    Well Drained

  • Soil type

    Loam, Sand

  • Tolerances

    Drought, Salt

  • Growth Rate

    Fast

  • Water Requirements

    Drought Tolerant, Average Water

  • Habit

    Clump-Forming

  • Seasonal Interest

    Spring, Summer, Fall, Winter

Ornamental Features

  • Flower Interest

    Showy

  • Flower Color

    White, Purple, Lavender, Blue Violet

  • Fruit Color

    Sandy Brown

  • Foliage Color (Spring)

    Light Green, Gray Green

  • Foliage Color (Summer)

    Light Green, Gray Green

  • Foliage Color (Fall)

    Light Green, Gray Green

  • Foliage Color (Winter)

    Silver, Gray

  • Bark Color

    Sandy Brown

  • Fragrant Flowers

    Yes

  • Fragrant Fruit

    Yes

  • Fragrant Foliage

    Yes

  • Bark or Stem Fragrant

    Yes

  • Flower Petal Number

    Single

  • Repeat Bloomer

    No

  • Showy Fruit

    No

  • Edible Fruit

    No

  • Showy Foliage

    Yes

  • Foliage Texture

    Fine

  • Foliage Sheen

    Matte

  • Evergreen

    Yes

  • Showy Bark

    No

Special Characteristics

  • Usage

    Container, Cutflower, Edging, Herb / Vegetable, Mixed Border, Rock Garden / Wall

  • Sharp or Has Thorns

    No

  • Invasive

    No

  • Attracts

    Butterflies

  • Self-Sowing

    Yes