Washington Lavender Farms

Our planned itinerary while exploring the State of Washington in July included visits to Sequim to see the lavender farms; how many would we visit, if someone asked me, I would have said one or two  with the thinking that you see one you’ve seen them all.  Well, good thing no one asked; we ended up visiting all eight of the lavender farms listed in the visitor’s brochure.

We set the GPS for one of the farms and by chance we passed the B&B Family Lavender Farm so we let fate take its course and stopped there.  Just in time as the owner, Bruce (the first B in the B&B) was just starting his tour.  Quite interesting facts about lavender farming from Bruce as he informed us that his family purchased the farm about 6 years ago.  Apparently, the climate and soil in Sequim appeals to the lavender plants; they don’t like water after the first year of being transplanted into the field and prefer arid conditions, according to Bruce.  Being an unsophisticated lavender novice, my only knowledge was what the plant looked like and its scent; we learned that there were 2 major types, the English and the French plants. The English plants were edible while the French plants were not so don’t plant the wrong one if you intend to use it in your food.  The plants are cultivated from small plants purchased from growers and can grow for approximately 23 years.  Bees do not pollinate these plants; Bruce said they welcome the bees to eat their plants and in return, they provide housing (aka hives) in exchange for their honey which they sell for other farm profit; those bees need to unionize for better perks!

The lavender tour brochures lists the B&B Family Lavender Farm as being home to 3 generations of Bruce & Bonnie (the other B) Family and Bruce proudly showed off the 100 year old barn where the lavender sales and processing operations take place.

The 100 year old barn and other old building on the property contain the doors for this Thursday Doors post; the other images are “eye-candy” information.

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This is Bruce showing us how they hang their lavender cuttings upside down to dry in the barn.

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Bruce is explaining the different types of lavender and proudly shows us his one-of-a-kind machine that separates the petals from the stem so they don’t have to do that by hand.

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To make the lavender scented oils they have to distill the flowers in a special made copper still (we found out other farms purchase similar stills from Europe, too); apparently, the chemical reaction with the steam, oil and copper makes the process work better than using stainless steel stills.  They distill quite a lot of lavender stems with flowers just to produce several ounces of the oil which explains why they are so expensive.

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Another look at the barn.

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Products sold in their store, door knob clocks!

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And some photos of the lavender plants and another “B”ee that doesn’t get credit in the B&B Family Lavender Farm name.

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Thank you for visiting my post and thanks again to Norm 2.0 for his creation of the Thursday Doors website that gives us bloggers an outlet to let our thoughts be put on paper or in this case, web space.  For more posts and photos of doors by others please go to: Thursday Doors.

26 thoughts on “Washington Lavender Farms

  1. I can just about smell the lavender from reading the post and seeing your lovely shots, Gordon! My b-i-l and s-i-l used to live in Provence so I’ve been to the lavender fields, but right after harvest. Even so, the scent lingered in the air. I love the scent and have grown a small bit of lavender in my garden several different years. I love the doors knobs, but I can’t figure out where the clock part it.

    P.S. Your link on Norm’s site isn’t clickable, so you might not get much traffic. I copied it and put it in my search line.

    janet

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Love to have lavender on hand (it also keeps mosquitoes away! Love your capture of the whole field. Since you visited all of the lavender farms, I wonder if they had different methods. In Europe, lavender is still very popular. Great post, Gordon! Yes, am doing well. Thinking about the next art project which will be more 3-dimensional.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi Jesh, I think all of the lavender growing techniques are similar in Washington; a big clue was the similarity of the distilling pots. I also read that lavender keeps gophers away and I see yards all over the neighborhood destroyed by gophers.
      3-D art project will be interesting; do you sculpt too?
      Thanks for the comments! Will chat when I get the next post up.

      Like

  3. Sorry for the late visit. We just got back from a short road trip over the long weekend. Lavender farms are fun to visit. You can always count on a few old barns. I just left the smells too, even after peak season.
    BTW I fixed your link it was missing the *http://*
    Cheers!

    Liked by 1 person

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