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The lavender genus includes annuals, herbaceous plants, subshrubs, and small shrubs. The color of some lavender flowers has come to be called lavender.
The leaves are long and narrow in most species.
In other species, they are pinnately toothed, or pinnate, sometimes multiple pinnate and dissected. Flowers are borne in whorls, held on spikes rising above the foliage. Flowers may be blue, violet or lilac.
The calyx is tubular, with five lobes. The corolla is often asymmetric. Lavender is an incredibly versatile herb for cooking. In today's upscale restaurants, fresh edible flowers are making a comeback as enhancements to both the flavor and appearance of food.
As a member of the same family as many of our most popular herbs, it is not surprising that lavender is edible. Flowers and leaves can be used fresh, and both buds and stems can be used dried. Lavender is a member of the mint family and is close to rosemary, sage, and thyme. It is best used with fennel, oregano, rosemary, thyme, sage, and savory.