Lavender is a type of plant found on almost all continents. It has a purplish color.

Lavenders in food

Lavender is also used in cake decorating, because the flowers can become candied. Sometimes they are used in flavoring baked goods and chocolate desserts, and sometimes they use it to make a very delicious “ lavender sugar”. Lavender flowers are also used to make tea.



Lavenders are sometimes put in medicine, too, and sometimes to prevent infection  such as lavender oil . As the folk wisdom says, lavender oil is also helpful to headaches, when rubbed on your temple, and lavender tea helps you relax before bed time. Lavender also is very helpful when applied to insect bites.


Salvia is the largest kind of plants in the Minit Family with nearly 1000 species of shrubs annually. It  is one of  the several  kinds that  commonly referred to as sage.

This kind is distributed throughout  the  Old  World  and  the  Americas, with three  distinct  regions  of  variety:

Central  and  South  America ; Central  Asia  and  Mediterranean ; Eastern  Asia (90 species).


Salvia species  include  annual, biennial, or  perennial  herbs, along with woody subshrubs. The stems are typically angled like other members of  Lamiaceae. The leaves  are  typically  entire, but  sometimes  toothed or  pinnately divided. The flowering stems bear small bracts, dissimilar to the basal leaves in some species,  the  bracts are  ornamental  and  showy.

The  flowers  are  produced  in  clusters or  panicles and  generally  produce  a showy  display  with  flower  colors  ranging  from  blue  to  red, with  white  and yellow  less  common. The   calyx  is  normally  tubular  or  bell-shaped, without bearded  throats, and  divided  into  two  parts  or  lips, the  upper  lip entire  or three-toothed, the  lower  two-cleft. The corollas are often paw shaped and are two-lipped. The upper lip is usually entire or three-toothed. The lower lip typically has two lobes. The stamens  are  reduced  to  two  short  structures  with anthers  two-celled, the  upper  cell  fertile, and  the  lower  imperfect. The flower  styles  are  two-cleft. The  fruits  are  smooth  ovoid  or  oblong  nutlets  and  in many species, they have a mucilaginous coating.

Many members of  Salvia  have  hairs growing  on  the  leaves, stems, and  flowers, which  help  to  reduce  water  loss  in  some  species. Sometimes  the hairs  are  glandular  and  secrete  volatile  oils  that  typically  give  a  distinct aroma  to  the  plant. When  the  hairs  are  rubbed  or  brushed, some of  the  oil-bearing cells are ruptured, releasing  the  oil. This  often  results  in  the  plant being  unattractive  to  grazing  animals  and  some  insects.

Staminal  lever  mechanism

The  defining  characteristic  of  the  genus  Salvia  is  the  unusual  pollination mechanism.

It is central to any investigation into the systematics, species radiation, or  pollination  biology  of  Salvia. It is  instead  of  the typical four found in other members of  the  tribe  Mentheae consists  of  two  stamens and  the  two thecae  on  each stamen are separated by an elongate connective. It  is  the  elongation of  the  connective  that  enables  the  formation  of  the  lever  mechanism.

It believed  that  the  lever  mechanism  is  a  key  factor  in  the  speciation, adaptive radiation, and  diversity  of  this large  genus.



George Bentham was first to give a full monographic account of the genus in 1832-1836, and based his classifications on stamina morphology and it is still

the only comprehensive  and  global  organization of  the  family.

He  was  less  confident about  his  organization  of  Salvia. At  that  time,  there  were  only  291  known  Salvia  species.



Bentham  eventually  organized  Salvia  into  twelve  sections (originally fourteen), based  on  differences  in  scyphus , pappus, flag. These  were  placed  into four  subgenera  that  were  generally  divided  into  Old  World  and  New World  species.

His system is still the most widely studied classification  of  Salvia, however, more  than  500  new  species  have  been  discovered  since  his  work.

Other botanists  have  since  offered  modified  versions  of  Bentham’s  classification system while  botanists  in  the  last  hundred  years  generally  do not  endorse Bentham’s  system.

Salvia was  monophyletic, meaning  that all  members of  the genus evolved  from one  ancestor.

However, the  immense variety  in  stamina  structure, vegetative  habit and  floral  morphology  of  the species  within  Salvia  has  opened  the  debate  about its infrageneric  classifications.

Selected species and their uses

Many species are used as herbs, as ornamental plants (usually for flower interest), and sometimes for  their ornamental  and  aromatic  foliage. The  Plant  List  has 986  accepted  species  names.


Many inter specific hybrids occur naturally, with a relatively high degree of cross ability, but some of them have  been intentional. A natural hybrid has given rise to a series of  popular ornamentals.


The name Salvia derives from the Latin severe. the verb related to sales , referring to the herb’s healing properties.

Pliny the Elder was the first author known to describe a plant called “Salvia” by the  Romans, likely  describing the type species of the genus Salvia, Salvia officinalis.

The  common  modern  English  name  sage derives from Middle English sawge, which was borrowed from Old French sauge, and like the botanical name stems from Latin salvere. When used without modifiers, the name ‘sage’ generally refers to Salvia officinalis . however, it is used with modifiers to refer to any member of the genus. The ornamental species are commonly referred to by their genus name Salviahee441


Melissa officinalis, known as lemon balm, balm, common balm, or balm mint, is a perennial herbaceous plant in the mint family Lamiaceae, native to south-central EuropeNorth Africa, the Mediterranean region, and Central Asia.

It grows to 70–150 cm (28–59 in) tall. The leaves have a gentle lemon scent, related to mint. During summer, small white flowers full of nectar appear. It is not to be confused with bee balm (which is genus Monarda). The white flowers attract bees, hence the genus name Melissa (Greek for ‘honey bee’). Its flavor comes from citronellal (24%), geranial (16%), linalyl acetate (12%) and caryophyllene(12%).


  1. Officinalis is native to Europe, central Asia, and Iran, but is now naturalized around the world.

Lemon balm seeds require light and at least 20°C (70°F) to germinate. Lemon balm grows in clumps and spreads vegetatively, as well as by seed. In mild temperate zones, the stems of the plant die off at the start of the winter, but shoot up again in spring. Lemon balm grows vigorously and should not be planted where it will spread into other plantings.

  1. Officinalis may be the “honey-leaf” (μελισσόφυλλον) mentioned byTheophrastus.[8] It was in the herbal garden of John Gerard, 1596.[9] The many cultivars of M. Officinalis include:
  2. Officinalis ‘Citronella’

M. Officinalis ‘Lemonella’

  1. Officinalis ‘Quedlinburger’
  2. Officinalis ‘Lime’
  3. Officinalis ‘Variegata’
  4. Officinalis ‘Aurea’

(M. Officinalis ‘Quedlinburger Niederliegende’ is an improved variety bred for high essential oil content.)



Culinary use

Lemon balm is often used as a flavoring in ice cream and herbal teas, both hot and iced, often in combination with other herbs such as spearmint. It is also frequently paired with fruit dishes or candies. It can be used in fish dishes and is the key ingredient in lemon balm pesto.

food-herbs (1)

Uses in traditional and alternative medicine

In the traditional Austrian medicine, M. Officinalis leaves have been prescribed for internal (as tea) or external (essential oil) application for the treatment of disorders of the gastrointestinal tract, nervous system, liver, and bile. It is also a common addition to peppermint tea, mostly because of its complementing flavor.

Lemon balm is the main ingredient of Carmelite Water, which is still for sale in German pharmacies.

Lemon balm essential oil is very popular in aromatherapy. The essential oil is commonly distilled with lemon oil, citronella oil, or other oils.


Research into possible effects on humans

High doses of purified lemon balm extracts were found to be effective in the amelioration of  laboratory-induced stress in human subjects, producing “significantly increased self-ratings of calmness and reduced self-ratings of alertness.” The authors further report a “significant increase in the speed of mathematical processing, with no reduction in accuracy” following the administration of a 300-mg dose of extract.

Lemon balm is believed to inhibit the absorption of the thyroid medication thyroxine.

Recent research found a daily dose of the tea reduced oxidative stress status in radiology staff who were exposed to persistent low-dose radiation during work. After only 30 days of taking the tea daily, consuming lemon balm tea resulted in a significant improvement in plasma levels of catalase, superoxide dismutase, and glutathione peroxidase, and a marked reduction in plasma DNA damage ,  myeloperoxidase, and lipid peroxidation.

The crushed leaves, when rubbed on the skin, are used as a mosquito repellent.

Lemon balm is also used medicinally as an herbal tea, or in extract form. It is used as an anxiolytic, mild sedative, or calming agent. At least one study has found it to be effective at reducing stress, although the study’s authors call for further research. Lemon balm extract was identified as a potent in vitro inhibitor of GABA transaminase, which explains anxiolytic effects. The major compound responsible for GABA transaminase inhibition activity in lemon balm was then found to be rosmarinic acid.

Lemon balm and preparations thereof also have been shown to improve mood and mental performance. These effects are believed to involve muscarinic and nicotinic acetylcholine receptors. Positive results have been achieved in a small clinical trial involving Alzheimer patients with mild to moderate symptoms. Essential oils obtained from Melissa officinalis leaf showed high  acetylcholinesterase  and  butyrylcholinesterase co-inhibitory activities.

Its antibacterial properties have also been demonstrated scientifically, although they are markedly weaker than those from a number of other plants studied.The extract of  lemon balm was also found to have exceptionally high antioxidant activity.

Lemon balm is mentioned in the scientific journal Endocrinology, where it is explained that Melissa officinalis exhibits anti thyrotropic activity, inhibiting TSH from attaching to TSH receptors, hence making it of possible use in the treatment of Graves’ disease or hyperthyroidism.



Lemon balm contains eugenoltannins, and terpenes. Melissa Officinalis also contains 1-octen-3-ol10-alpha-cadinol3-octanol3-octanone, alpha-cube been, alpha-humulene, beta-bourbon end, caffeic acid,  caryophyllene,  caryophyllene oxide, catechin Enechlorogenic acidcis-3-hexenolcis-ocimenecitral Acitral Bcitronellalcopaenedelta-cadineneeugenol acetategamma-cadinenegeranialgeraniolgeranyl acetategermacrene D, iso geraniallinaloolluteolin-7-glucoside ,methyl heptanoneneralneroloctyl benzoateoleanolic acidpomo lit acidprotocatechuic acid,  phenazine,  rosmarinic acidrosarian acidstachyosesuccinic acidthymoltrans-ocimene and ursolic acid. Lemon balm flowers may contain traces of  harmine.