The Ferme Rabbit Hill ... the start of "Rabbit Hill Lavande".
Since visiting lavender farms in the PNW out on the Olympic Peninsula, I dreamed of having a small lavender farm. When you think of lavender you think of the rolling hills of Provence, so as a grower in Normandie--I do get 'that look' when I talk about growing it on the Northwest coast of the country. But so far it has been wonderful.
We started this season with 30 new plants to add to our established 20--which makes ours a very small farm. We lost and replaced 5 to the rabbits and then 3 more to cows. It will continue to be a lesson each day in nurturing and growing and I cannot wait to add more plants each season.
We are currently growing three 'lavandin' varieties (all native to the Mediterranean) 'Grosso' 'Provence' and 'English'... and Spanish--just for fun.
“Just don’t give up trying to do what you really want to do. Where there is love and inspiration, I don’t think you can go wrong.” Ella Fitzgerald
Tales of a lavender farmer ... Amazing lessons are learned in farming or having a garden; patience, focus, perseverance ... nurturing with care. Just in a short time I have learned so much --- how to plant, fight off hungry 'predators', pruning, drying ...
The addition of the 'barn room' for cutting and drying the bundles made the dream of 'Rabbit Hill Lavande" complete! Although the kitchen of Maison Rabbit Hill is often the place you will find lavender hanging to dry too.
Once a working farm of orchards and cider production, the farm at Rabbit Hill now 'hosts' a happy family of chickens, a few 'tenant' cows about 3000 wild rabbits--- and a small lavender farm.
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Available in loose bud bags for sachets or to have around the home in small bowls -- or currently I have small bouquets of 40-50 stems. I hope to have larger bouquets and quantities after the season is finished.
Look for lavender in the on-line shop in July and August.
How did we get started? Besides always loving lavender? Truthfully, I sent 'French Guy' to pick up "a few" lavender plants when they were on promotion early this spring -- and he came home with TWENTY. We already had 20 from last year which we had purchased right before we moved to Rabbit Hill. Having no idea where I could plant the 20 new plants, we decided that a small 'field of dreams' was in order ...
Lavender and Rabbit Hill ... Rabbits who although do not fancy lavender on their main menu --- will try anything once, or twice ... or 5 times. We lost five plants of the twenty--and then launched the counter attack first using a smelly blood meal. More munching led to the fence construction and the addition of the wind chime and finally the rabbits backed off.