We are excited to support the University of Missouri Extension in the project Growing the Lavender Industry in Missouri! This three year project will collect data at three sites in Missouri (Springfield, Kirksville, and Ste. Genevieve) to determine the best growing practices for lavender production in our state.
Lavender was one of our favorite blooms that we'd grown on our little urban farm in Ohio and we're looking forward to adding it to our flower farm here in Missouri. Our first step in this expansion is to prepare our soil so that our lavender plants will have a better chance to survive our winters. Our clay soil tends to block the absoption of oxygen into the root system of the plants so we are adding organic matter in the form of a coarse compost, wood chips, or bulk mulch. We've also been researching which varieties will work best for cut flower production and have it nailed down to several varieties that have different bloom times ensuring we have a continual harvest throughout the season.
This continual harvest is not only good for our bouquets, but is also beneficial to the bees that Paul will be raising, as bees LOVE lavender. For those of you that don't know, Paul had been raising bees for several years, but had to take a break from it last year to recover from a mini stroke. So anyway, bees will once again be flying throughout our blooms collecting pollen from flowers we haven't yet harvested.
As we have decided to expand our flower fields to include lavender we made the decision to became members of the US Lavender Growers Association. Through this membership we look to establish a peer-to-peer relationship with other lavender growers in our region, the United States and around the world. We are especially looking forward to the US Lavender Conference where we will attend 14 educational sessions, attend Q & A sessions, and have topical discussions with other growers in our region!
Until next time, keep spreading joy!