A cluster of flowering lavender stems

Choosing Lavender

Why Lavender?

Sometimes we’re asked why we chose to start a lavender farm. Lavender is a universally loved plant. It’s hardy, aromatic and beautiful to look at in full bloom. It also has many health benefits. We wanted to start a family project that would suit our lifestyle choices, and lavender became the obvious plant to work with.

Lavender can be used in culinary, personal application and lifestyle ways, as there are several types. L.angustifolia is an English lavender that flowers from late spring. Harvested for oil, it can be used for relieving stress and fatigue and reducing the heart rate and blood pressure. It has anti-depressant, anti-bacterial and anti fungal benefits. It can also be used as an antiseptic and insect repellant. Harvested for buds, it can be used in cooking, watch out for our recipe blog! Its sweet aroma means it can be made into syrup, blended in tea, and used for baking and garnishes. It can also be used as pot pourri, for calming, soothing benefits. What a wonder plant!

L.intermedia, another English lavender that flowers from late spring, is beneficial for medicinal purposes. Harvested for oil, it is often used in soaps and perfumery. Through the distillation process comes the pure hydrosol, floral water, which is wonderful as room sprays and cleaning products. It can even be used to calm dogs when sprayed on their bed or collar.

French lavender is our all year round choice. Located in the front field of our farm it can be visible from the road when passing. We harvest this from time to time when it needs a prune, and we use the water and oil from distillation in our soaps.

We also chose to plant rosemary

A rosemary stem in flower

Rosemary and lavender are part of the mint family. Another hardy plant with many uses. Our rosemary grows well with the natural rainfall we receive, so we don’t need to irrigate. We have a few different types, Tuscan Blue, Herb Cottage, Salem and Portuguese Pink. 

Rosemary is well known for using in cooking (again keep an eye out for our recipe blog), and for memory health. But did you also know it can be used for hair growth stimulation? It can slow the greying of hair and promote shininess, and if mixed with a carrier oil and massaged into the scalp it can stimulate hair follicles.

Rosemary is a rich source of antioxidants and anti-inflammatory compounds, and is thought to boost the immune system and increase blood circulation. Another wonder plant with its uses!

Our lemon pelargoniums

Pelargonium in flower

Our lemon pelargoniums, a type of geranium, fit well into the category of being another hardy plant. They grow into wonderful bushy shrubs and have a sweet citrus aroma. Their leaves can be used in tea and salads, with their delicate lemon scent, and the small pink flowers can be used in salads and as garnishes.

When distilling, we use the oil and water in our soaps and balms, as well as lemon scented floral water. With its aromatherapy uses such as alleviating anxiety and depression, while also having antibacterial, antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties.

Our natives and herbs

An echinacea flower

As well as the plants in the fields, we have a selection of natives that have various uses for our farm. We liaised with our local landcare group who advised us on what historically grew in our wonderful area, Portarlington, and what would work well now. We chose varieties based on their oil and tea potential, as well as being a boundary wind break. And equally as important (if not more so), to bring back some wildlife, support soil health and air quality. We love it when we see dragonflies in the warmer months, as they can be a sign of good air quality.

A dragonfly on a lavender bud

It has been wonderful inspiring our children when they have helped us plant the trees. They know they have contributed to such a worthy cause, and are excited that we have planted hundreds, not just a few here and there.

Our herb range is also based on culinary and therapeutic benefits, as well as providing a fabulous splash of colour to our nursery when in bloom. When ruffled by breeze, there can be gentle aromas of sweet chamomile or fresh mint. What’s your favourite herb to grow?

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