White Oak Lavender Farm
Over the summer, my friend Ellie told me about a visit she had made to a lavender farm in Harrisonburg, VA. In hearing about the visit, I conjured up an image of rows of purple flowers and the aromatic sweet scent of lavender wafting in the air. Given that the farm is on the same exit as where I live, it is sad how long it took me to finally make the trip over. But finally, a couple of weekends ago, I went to explore the serenity scented White Oak Lavender Farm.
Although tours are offered on Saturdays, Ellie and I opted out. She had already been on the tour and I was happy to let hear give me the background. The farm is named after the abundance of White Oaks that were on the property before the Civil War. The property itself was used as a Union Camp and is near were the Battle of Cross Keys was fought. The trees were cut down and now the owners, Julie and Rick Haushalter, have replanted white oaks to help bring them back to the property.
The farm not only houses fields of woody lavender in which you can pick-your-own during the summer, White Oak is home to several rescue animals. Horses, goats, alpacas, ducks, and chickens have made a pleasant life for themselves. There is even a “Rabitat” in which kids can enter and pet Beau and Nilla, the Giant Flemish rabbits, whose size, true to the name, are something to see. I wonder what Alice would have said if she had come across them.
White Oak is also trying to develop a serenity centered respite. At one end of the field, is a calm reflection area with benches surrounding a vivid and colorful stain glass window of a dove. Also, in other areas is a small pond with benches for you to sit in calm enjoyment. White Oak also provides workshops designed to restore tranquility and healing to your life.
Once you finish wondering the grounds, there is a shop where you can get lots of lavender products. There are soaps, skin care, hair care, etc. For the chefs, you can buy several lavender centered cooking products: lavender sugar, lavender honey, and culinary lavender. If you are not sure what to cook with the lavender, there are bowls that come with recipes and there are also small recipe books. The item that intrigued me the most was a grinder with pepper and lavender blossoms. I’m not sure what you would do with that, but I’m intrigued none the less.
So come, relax, inhale, pet animals, meditate, and take some lavender home with you. A back seat with a lavender plant, various soaps, and dried buds for baking, might just be the most calming car trip of your life.