Thursday, August 28, 2014

Harvest Day

The first time I went on the lavender tour (2008 was it?), it was for the beauty of the lavender fields and photographing that beauty. It doesn't hurt that I love Provence. As far as lavender's scent goes, I didn't have the most favorable of associations. Great grandmas were so heavily perfumed with it in the day that its cloying sweetness overwhelmed me. I didn't expect when I went on the trip that I might want to buy lavender products.

I approached sniffings warily and found most plants and products were much lighter and fresher than my memories. This might not be so bad!

I'd have to get out all my calendars to count the times I returned, three or four times for sure. I still go mainly for the photography, but scent of lavender, used judiciously, I'm liking now.

Years ago, my folks planted lavender in their front yard. The plants survive to this day, as Sister and Brother-in-Law live there about half-time now, and I've picked a few little bunches from time to time. One bunch I left on the dashboard of my car for a year or more and discovered that the scent could be revived by giving the bunch a tap. And although a spritz of lavender on a pillow is supposed to help you sleep, that little blast in the car wakes me up when I get drowsy driving.

After my room addition last year, the planter boxes in front of my house were extended across the new part of the house. I had my landscape lady plant lavender in the new portion. A week or two ago, I talked with her about when the lavender might need pruning. She was working on ridding my iris of white fly, but thought she'd trim the lavender "next time."  Heck, I didn't want it tossed out with the weeds and trimmings, I wanted it. I could make little bundles to use as a room freshener. Air needs freshening when you have inside cats. Since the landscape lady would be back today to get the watering timer set properly, I figured I better get busy on the harvest.

Today was harvest day. Some of the shoots were a bit over the hill, but they still smell good. And "drying" is what I had planned for them anyway. There isn't a lot, just enough for a few bunches, and I did not denude the plants.

Here are the iris, earlier in the year, in the flower bed that's along the front of the old part of the house.

Right next to my photo of the iris in the album is this quilt top that Donna put together in Spring Quilt camp, in accidental harmony with the iris and lavender.  If you look closely, you'll discover that this is her Elvis Quilt. What a neat  color coincidence.

Here's the spring version of the lavender plants, looking scrawny and disheveled.

Ten rooms, ten bundles of lavender, hung up to dry,

They make interesting shadows on the wall.

Good night. Maybe I'll spritz some lavender on my pillow and get me to sleep earlier tonight.


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