Recently a local magazine arrived on my doorstep with the most gorgeous cover photo. It featured rows of the purplest plants I had ever seen. Upon investigation inside the magazine, I found that the photos were taken at a newly opened lavender farm not 20 minutes away from my home.
Terre Bleu is owned by a family who fell in love with lavender after visiting a similar farm in Quebec a few years back. Now they own the biggest lavender farm in Ontario with over 10 000 plants.
The farm is open to visitors on weekends only so we made an effort to get there this past Sunday. It couldn't have been a more glorious day to visit any kind of farm, yet alone rows of lovely lavender!
None of our three children had any idea what lavender smelled like. And, if I was completely honest, I'd have to tell you that I can't stand the scent of lavender! It's much too strong for me.
However, there was a subtlety to the fragrance in the field and it was quite light and enjoyable.
In addition to many lavender products, the farm also specializes in their own lavender honey. At the far end of the fields, an apiary has been set up so that thousands of bees can go about their daily lives, collecting pollen from the lavender plants in order to create many litres of honey each year.
The Distillery is where the lavender buds are processed in order to remove the essential oils used in soaps, lotions and baking.
This copper kettle is heated to hundreds of degrees and extracts the oils from the lavender.
|Lavender bunches drying in the heat of the copper distiller.|
There were bees everywhere! I would guess that every second plant had at least one fuzzy, honey-making friend circling its buds. Kevin and Afton are taking a look, but not getting to close!
This farm is unique in that it grows and sells two kinds of lavender- English and French. The English lavender came into season back in June and all of the purple blooms had been picked. The purple of the fields today is that of the French lavender, cultivated for its hardiness.
In addition to lavender and honey, the farm specializes in Equestrian training as well. The female half of the ownership was a competitive rider for many years. Now she trains others to ride.
Casey, our beagle/shepherd mix, had never met a horse before. I think he was a bit frightened by them, yet really excited at the same time!
Isn't this a wonderful place? I posted these pictures on Facebook and many of my friends who live nearby had no idea there was such a lovely place to visit within minutes of our home. Since then, several shots of my friends' children have popped up on Facebook, sharing their adventures at Terre Bleu.
Wishing you all a wonderful weekend,
PS. I am linking up over at Packing My Suitcase for Allane's "Monday Escapes"
and Bonnie's "Travel Tuesday" on A Compass Rose.