Three years ago Matt and I visited Matanzas Creek Winery and Lavender Gardens in early summer and wandered among the beautiful purple fields. Ever since we’ve returned every year, and even attended their annual Days of Wine and Lavender in late June which takes place under the oaks and among the lavender fields. It’s a beautiful event with gourmet food vendors pairing their lavender infused appetizers with the local wines, definitely worth a day trip in June if you’re in the area!
Lavender has been cultivated and grown for centuries and its a flowering plant that has long been a favorite through the ages for its beauty, scent, culinary and therapeutic uses. I’m a huge fan of this botanical, I have two dozen Provence lavender plants in my yard that I harvest every summer – I keep the buds for making sachets and dry several bundles upside-down for future use.
I asked if the specialist at Matanzas Creek would answer some questions about the growth and care of lavender, and today Pat Ross is the expert answering some common questions about the care and growth of lavender.
Hi Pat! Tell us your role in lavender production at Matanzas Creek Winery and Lavender Gardens?
I oversee the production of all of our lavender products and packaging, developing the unique packaging and marketing the products to spas and retail stores. We sell our lavender products online, you can find all of them in our retail store.
What are the most popular varieties of lavender and how can you tell them apart?
Our large garden is both varieties of Grosso and Provence lavender. ‘Provence’ is a lighter shade of lavender used for culinary purposes. The ‘Grosso’ is a deeper shade used because the fragrance is important in sachets, bouquets, soap products, etc.