Jay's sister Lynn was here over the weekend. On Saturday we decided to drive out to the local lavender farm. It's just down the road about ten kilometres, and I had been wanting to see what it was like. In terms of beauty it did not disappoint. The rows of lavender stretched out under the summer blue sky were breathtaking.
The farmer also had apple cider trees, plum trees and a huge vegetable garden, not to mention his winter's supply of wood stacked neatly nearby. There was apple cider for sale.
I'm not sure how much he was charging for this bottle. It looked a bit sketchy, so I wasn't interested in buying any. But I did note the price of the small bundles of lavender. $35!!!
However, not everything cost money. One item in particular was being given out for free, and in very large quantities. Medical advice. Lynn asked the farmer what one of the vegetables in his garden was, and he launched into a lecture on how we don't eat enough bitters any more, and "if people ate more bitters there wouldn't be all these diseases we see nowadays." That's where he lost Jay and me. We headed back to the car. In a straight line and at a rapid pace. Lynn, who has never encountered a conversation she didn't want to participate in, stayed on. She was told the vegetable was chicory, and it was good for diabetics because it contained insulin. Seriously. The guy actually said this. He must have been confusing insulin and inulin. Bottom line: don't count on your local aging hippie lavender farmer for medical advice. Google is a much better bet.
After the lavender farm we decided to keep going and see where the road would lead. We were quite surprised when we came across a hop farm, with a sign at the bottom saying there was an open house. I'm still a farm girl at heart, so I turned into the field and parked. We were surprised to see so many people mingling about. Here are Jay and Lynn making their way to the tents.
These fields were spectacular! Row after row of hops, with the mountains as a backdrop - it was as beautiful as it was surprising. I had no idea this hop farm was just a few minutes down the road from where we live.
I love the cloud formation in this picture. It looks like someone took a paint brush and quickly swiped it across the sky.
Here's a close-up view of the hops themselves.
While I was busy taking pictures Jay and Lynn were talking to the growers. They learned quite a bit about hops and the brewing process, but probably the most interesting piece of information they managed to pick up was the fact that the open house was for brewers from around the province, and not for local residents. This left me feeling extremely guilty about the "free drink" I was holding in my hand, but not guilty enough to be sorry we had stopped. The vision of those rows of hops, the deep blue sky, and the mountains in the background will stay with me for a very long time.