Sage Creations Organic Farm offers lavender bouquets, wreaths, culinary packs and oils
LAVENDER FESTIVAL NEXT WEEK
The Lavender Association of Western Colorado will host Colorado’s only Lavender Festival in Palisade, Friday through Sunday, July 11-13.
On Friday, July 11, the festival kicks off with an all-day guided motor coach tour. The tour ventures through the North Fork Valley lavender farms, a picnic, and activities. The tour is from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tickets cost $90 per person and lunch is included.
On Saturday, July 12, the festival is planned for Palisade’s Memorial Park. It will feature a variety of vendors selling lavender products, seminars, workshops, free entertainment, and more. The festival is free to attend.
Also on Saturday at Wine Country Inn, a Lavender Festival Gala Dinner will take place. Tickets cost $95 per person which includes a four-course meal inspired by lavender.
As a round-up of the weekend festivities, on Sunday the farms will open for self-guided tours, from Paonia to Fruita to Palisade. Maps are available at the festival on Saturday.
For a full schedule of the weekend events, visit www.coloradolavender.org.
— Brittany Markert, Free Press reporter
The smell of fresh lavender emanates from Sage Creations Organic Farm (3555 E Road in Palisade). Since Paola Legarre and her husband purchased it nine years ago, their lavender crop has grown from 40 to more than 13,000 plants. The farm also cultivates heirloom vegetables, cherries and herbs.
Sage Creations Organic Farm is operated as a family endeavor, along with several full- and part-time employees.
According to Legarre, plants at Sage Creations excel due to good drainage, full sun and rocky soil. Lavender is also drought tolerant, making it a good crop for Mesa County’s arid climate. More than 50 varieties (also known as cultivars) and three species grow on her farm.
Sage Creations also sells essential oils, hydrosols (floral waters), bouquets, wreaths, culinary packs and more in its on-site store. The farm is open Wednesday through Saturday, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. For $6 per bundle, the farm additionally offers a “you-pick” option, allowing visitors to cut their own lavender bundles. Baskets and scissors are provided.
“With lavender, it’s a huge education process,” Legarre said. “ … I like to teach people how to use it.”
Fun facts: When to harvest lavender depends on its use. If it’s meant for essential oils, it’s harvested at 50-percent bloom. For a wreath arrangement, flowers are harvested at 25-percent bloom. Because lavender is known to be an antiseptic and anti-inflammatory, its made into oils to be used for health remedies as well as scents. The purple flower is also used in many food recipes and drink concoctions.
“My kids love this chocolate lavender shortbread cookie I make,” Legarre said.
She also makes a syrup, a favorite she adds to margaritas, iced teas, and other drinks.
For more information on Sage Creations Organic Farm (and to view a few original recipes including lavender), visit http://www.sagecreationsorganicfarm.com.
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