...by both humans and honey bees alike! Spanish Lavender is one of thirty-nine varieties of Lavender in the world.
It's lanky form and large flower heads make it stand out in comparison to other Lavenders like English Lavender or Provence Lavender.
Some people call them "Rabbit ears" because their appearance can easily cause one to imagine a purple bunny popping it's head up in the long grass to look around while it mindlessly chews it's dinner of greens!
Although Spanish Lavender may be less winter hardy than other species of Lavender, it is well accommodated to handle the Texas heat!
On the other hand, for comparison purposes, here is a picture of Provence Lavender.
This Lavender is named after the location in France where this beautiful plant is most abundant. One can easily see a difference in form between the two. The Provence Lavender being a more slender and pristine princess while the Spanish Lavender struts like a bold and over indulgent queen!
They're both majestic, aromatic and romantic...it's just a matter of personal preference I guess : )
Individual flowers or plants are spectacular enough, sure. But nothing can match the regal splendor of row upon row of royal purple majesty as nature's carpet folds over rolling hills and extends as far as the eye can see!
It's truly a feast for the human eye to see, but we are not alone in our admiration and infatuation with Spanish Lavender!
Lavender farmers and beekeepers describe the beautiful hum of bees in the warm summer sun, as the fragrance of lavender washes over the olfactory senses.
Honey bees absolutely LOVE this relative of the mint family, as is evidenced by their complete takeover of each plant. Hundreds of bees busily buzz from flower to flower gathering nectar, pollinating as they go.
It is a perfect symbiotic relationship as the heightened pollination from the bees increases the strength and vibrancy of the Spanish lavender oils in the plant, while the bees are benefited by the rich pollen and nectar for their colony.
We humans are a third beneficiary of this process! For our efforts of care for both the bees and the herb, we get to enjoy a premium honey from a very special plant!
Is just one of many bee-friendly plants that are also very beneficial to us humans as well!
There is a special project in the works. It's a social campaign to celebrate bees and all of their busy work. Our honey-bee-loving friends (Rowse Honey) from the UK are going to plant thousands of bee-friendly flowers!
"Rowse Honey" is planting thousands of lavender plants across the UK. To have one planted in your honor simply tweet them or write on their Facebook wall using 'Thanks #Busy Bees' on your post.
Each tweet and Facebook message counts as one flower, so the more they get, the more they can plant! :)
please consider doing something in your own backyard ... plant some bee-friendly plants and help us raise awareness of the plight of the honey bee.
Do as I did today. Go down to your local garden center. Watch for some busy bees. If flowers are blooming, you will soon see their preferred forage. Buy what the bees are advertising!
If your climate is conducive, you might consider some other ideas as well that might include some species of Lilac, Heather or Thyme...honey bees love them too!
Buy as many as you can afford and mass plant them. Bees are most attracted to clusters of plants rather than those that are scattered over a broad area.
Today we picked up six Provence Lavender plants even though we already have plenty in our garden!
Bee removals are extremely rewarding.
Not only is the beekeeper providing a service to the resident, but he/she is also saving bees and building up their apiary. An added benefit is the genetic diversity gained through the introduction of potential feral colonies.
Here are some of my recent adventures...