South River Lavender

Harvesting lavender at South river Lavender farm, amador county and el Dorado county There is no more rewarding time at South River Lavender than the spring harvest. After careful watering, weeding and nurturing dull, grayish green shrubs throughout the winter, the vibrant display of color and sweet lavender aroma that envelopes the farm offer an amazing experience.

The window of time to cut lavender at peak quality is relatively short. There are critical factors to consider for successful cutting and preparing lavender for our fresh flower bouquets, dried bundles, and dried herb products.

Age old practices abound to maintain the quality of cut lavender when harvesting and drying. Lavender is never cut wet. We try to allow moisture from rain or dew to completely evaporate before harvesting to avoid discoloration and eliminate the possibility of mold developing during the drying process.

We do not harvest when the weather is extremely hot to prevent stems from wilting and minimize essential oil loss. Harvesting is usually done mid-morning after the dew is gone, the temperature is still relatively cool and the bee activity is at a minimum. (so many bees!)

We pay close attention to the flower buds as they begin to open; how many buds are open before cutting for market, which will make the most beautiful long stem bouquets and which will be cut early for drying. We determine which varities will be used for oil distillation and which will provide the most long lasting aroma for dried bundles and loose buds. So many decisions for what is seemingly such a simple process of cutting stems of lavender.

The South River Lavender summer involves busy days harvesting and hand crafting our products to bring to market. We hope to see you this summer at the Amador County Farmers Markets and share the wonders of this amazing plant.