Sunday, July 12, 2009

Day One of the Oregon Lavender Festival

We started our Oregon Lavender Festival tour in Yamhill where there is a festival held in Beulah (don’t hear that name enough) Park. There we wandered around from tent to tent. I bought several plants and my friend and I both bought lavender jelly, splitting a four pack at a bargain rate. Before leaving we stopped by the concession stand to get lavender Snickerdoodle that was wonderful!
Our first farm stop was Willakenzie there in Yamhill. The farm features a wide range of plants, cut lavender, and u-pick available. The farm also keeps Velveteen Alpacas and demonstrates spinning and weaving with products for sale. Their gift shop is all things lavender including candy, cookies and soda. I am not a big soda fan. Had the drink been noncarbonated I would have bought some. We purchased some lavender sorbet and sat on a patio enjoying both the delicacy and the view as the sun began to burn morning clouds away.
Our next stop was Woodland Lavender Farm, also in Yamhill. There was lavender a plenty and a few arts and crafts. A raffle for the Oregon Food Bank was going on so I gave them five dollars. The best parts of Woodland was its situation, which is beautiful, and the fact that they were handing out free bottles of water.
Barb’s Dutchmill Herb Farm, which has no website, was a folksy place run by an elderly couple. Barb was more than happy to take us around and show us all of her organic lavender and herbs. Her gift shop is sparse, but what it lacked Barb makes up for in personality. They also sell organic chicken eggs and we came away with two dozen. It was here that we ate our picnic lunch.
Helvetia Lavender Farm, located in Hillsboro, was jam packed with people. It is more festive than the Yamhill Fair. Set on a hill its situation could not be more beautiful. There were booths, music and food. A tea room had been attractively set up on the deck of the owner’s house and we had “scone cake” smothered in berries, our choice from a short list of tea, and a chocolate truffle.
For the farm Lavender at Stonegate is located in West Linn, a bedroom community to Portland. We had to take a van from the nursery parking lot a short way to the farm. A field which had previously been used as a parking lot for the festival has been given over to the raising of vegetables, doubtless because of the current economical situation. They did not have a great deal of lavender products, but I came away with a five dollar bouquet.
Our second to the last stop of the day was Barn Owl in Wilsonville. I have written before about Barn Owl and it was a busy place on this first day of the festival. Barn Owl has the largest gift shop and for the festival had a few booths set up in the yard.

Our last stop was a lock out. Despite the fact that the festival was to run until 6 PM, Lavender Thyme Herb farm in Woodburn was closed when we arrived and greeted by a growling dog.

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