We are impatiently awaiting harvest here but yet still planting at the same time! We have many of our English lavenders that are this close to harvest. I am planning a day out in the field (not doing orders inside) tomorrow through Wednesday, to get caught up on planting and harvesting. We have almost all of our Grosso and Phenomenal budding. The Grosso have gotten so big. I was really worried about that particular type of lavender because it's less hardy for overwintering, but they seem to be doing just great.
We hung our make-shift drying rack up and it's awaiting bundles. We talk to/network with a lot of lavender growers and other farm owners through the United States Lavender Growers Association. A great idea for a make-shift drying rack was posted via a picture. It was using cattle panels. Those non-farmers - that is a sort of a panel of fencing to keep livestock in. They have cattle panels, hog panels, and goat panels. We wanted the cattle because they have a taller height. The issue was they were 16 feet long and we don't have a truck! We have an SUV. We lucked out at our local Tractor Supply store when the sales clerk took us out back to look at the panels out back of the store. Lo and behold, they had some cattle panels that were called Easy Panels that had the height we were looking for but were only 8 feet long. So we took two and tied them to the roof of the SUV. My husband hung them up in the barn with baling twine. When we harvest I will get some pictures of the entire process. Since this is our first harvest, I don't expect it to be huge. These are mostly 1st and 2nd year plants. They reach maturity at 3 years. We do have a handful of older plants that we brought from our old house. I was happy to see they are doing great, survived the transplanting, and are very close to harvest as well.
We bought more plants this weekend- of course, why stop now? I ran out and got two trays of mostly Munstead. It's what the closest greenhouse had left, but to be honest with you I have always had really good luck with Munstead. I like our Hidocote as well. Our Melissa is doing very well although looking light lavender instead of pink. They aren't completely in bloom so maybe that will change. I am having a harder time with Folgate. I heard this was a good variety for cold winters, but it's probably just so-so for us. I have a couple die on me this season. Our Phenomenal is doing well too. So I will be finishing off the back field planting and harvesting very likely the same week.
We got more rock.... yes more. We had 18 tons the first deliveyr. This time we have about half that. We need to fill in bare spots in the front field and cover the back field. So tomorrow son #1 is coming to help spread rock while I plant and possibly start to harvest.
The test plot for sunflowers, zinnas and wildflowers is coming along. I see shoots and things growing. Our test plot for gladiolus, dahlia, and yarrow is doing well. We got two more roses - Gypsy red and yellow. Things are coming along. I should have some harvest pics soon! Happy harvesting.
New on the Shop
We packaged our wildflower and herbal potpourri in mason jars for gift giving. You can still get them by the bag, but if you'd like to give a quaint gift of some wonderful smelling dried wildflowers, lavender, chamomile, rose petals etc this a cute way to give as a gift. I also have been working one some Summer Festival Bouquets and wreaths!