Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Best Lavender for the Wet Coast

~ Spanish lavender ~
I try to hold off harvesting the last of the flowers at this time of year in order to give the remaining insects a little bit more food to get to where they are going. But the lavender was just perfect for harvesting!

Spanish lavender seems to be the best lavender - at least in my yard - for the wet coast. It grows tall & lanky - which allows the air to move through the branches & dry the plant out, especially important during the winter when the cold & the rains come in.

I cut this bouquet & pruned the plant back in preparation for winter. I know I pruned the plants hard this spring because they do suffer a bit from the frosts & any snow fall (maybe I should cover them this winter...) but it's so great to have lavender at this time of year! Next month I'll put plastic over top my other lavender plants (English lavender) in order to keep them from becoming water logged.

I'll dry the buds & then grind them up for use in my herbal salts (edible) or in a bath (put the buds in a cloth sack under the hot running water) or I might even steep the buds to make lavender jelly or a simple syrup for baking or cocktails in the winter.

I like to brine my chickens with dried lavender buds & then when I roast them, I'll grind up some more lavender & put a salt-lavender crust on the meat. Great flavour for the winter!

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