English lavender is one of the most famous lavenders. Many varieties exist to decorate our gardens. These tend to be hardier than other types of lavender, making them great for planting in colder areas.
English Lavender varieties, key facts
Name – Lavandula angustifolia
How many varieties – 200+
Height – 2+ to 4 feet (60-90 cm)
Exposure – full sun
Soil – ordinary, well-drained
Foliage – evergreen – Flowering – June-September (weather-dependent)
Top three English lavender cultivars
These three are the most famous of all, and are easy to find in garden stores. They’re beautiful and grow easily. Fragrance is nice, too.
This is a short lavender with stark purple flowers. Hidcote lavender is a low-growing variety, about 20 inches (50cm) tall. It has a mounded growth habit which grows into beautiful symmetrical mounds.
From the original cultivar, new sports appeared that are now highly prized:
- pink flowers with the ‘Hidcote Pink‘ variety
- taller growth with the ‘Hidcote Giant‘ cultivar: a much larger version, achieving heights of 36 to 40 inches (90 to 100 cm)
Munstead lavender is the same size as Hidcote lavender, but its leaves and stems aren’t as lush and bushy. They let light pass through and are better for wildflower gardens since they don’t commandeer all the sunlight around them.
Flowers are a silvery violet color, with a delicate fragrance. They don’t stand out as much as those of the Hidcote cultivar because they blend into the wispy, silvery leafage.
- All in all a short, 12-inch-tall (30cm) variety with flowers that are a deep violet color, strong fragrance
Nana alba lavender
The most popular white lavender is the Nana alba cultivar. It’s a dwarf variety that doesn’t grow very tall. The “alba” part of the name stands for white, in latin. Strictly speaking, this cultivar is an English lavender hybrid (lavandin).
Flowers aren’t as fragrant as those of purple-colored lavenders.
There is a “alba” variety that grows taller, so only choose the ‘Nana alba’ if you prefer smaller shrubs.
More English lavender varieties
Since this lavender is one of the most resistant and fragrant, many breeders are attentive to any new sports. New varieties with interesting traits are much appreciated on this market!
- L. angustifolia ‘Sarah’ – grows 6 to 24 inches (15 to 60 cm) tall. Cultivar with violet flowers
- L. angustifolia ‘Jean Davis’ – wonderful light-pink flowers, grows to 20 or 24 inches (50-60 cm)
- L. angustifolia ‘Imperial Gem’ – summer blooming, narrow silver-green leaves
- L. angustifolia ‘Loddon pink’ – tight shape and pale pink flowers
- L. angustifolia ‘Twickle purple’ – long violet flowers, neatly staged
- L. angustifolia ‘Arctic Snow’ – one of the white lavenders, wonderful white blooming
- L. angustifolia ‘Rosea’ – wonderful, clear pink variety
- L. angustifolia ‘Little Lady’ – (also called ‘Batlad’) light blue flowers in late summer
- L. angustifolia ‘Melissa lilac’ – soft lilac color once opened, dark violet while still closed
- L. angustifolia ‘Platinum blond’ – leaves are what stand out here, they have ivory-colored rims