1219 Morris Dr., Niles, MI



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The Lavender Hill Spring Update

Posted 5/16/2019 12:20pm by Martha O. Wilczynski.

Lavender Hill Farm of Niles, Michigan  LLC

1219 Morris Dr., Niles, MI  49120,  269-684-0123

Happy Spring from Lavender Hill Farm!

Plant Sales/Shop Hours:

The farm shop will be open in May: Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays from 10 am to 4 pm. Our plant sales will begin Thursday May 9th at the farm and will continue into summer.  This year we will have our 5 main varieties available: English lavender varieties: 'Folgate' and 'Royal Velvet', Hybrid varieties: 'Super', 'Grosso', and 'Gros Bleu'.  These plants were all propagated from our field plants last fall, and rooted in our greenhouse over the winter. Plants will be available in 2.5 inch pots for $5 ea. Full flats of 32 plants will be discounted to $4.50 ea.

Lavender Field Update:

Farming is not easy! This past winter was a harsh one, such that we haven't seen since 2014 and 2015.  If you were at our farm those seasons, you may remember we had a lighter flowering than most years, and this year will be a light flowering year as well. This is caused by last winter's extreme cold and wind without adequate snow for insulation.

In easy winters lavender foliage stays green and the plants transition easily into Spring. But in hard winters like this past one, the leaves die, requiring the plants to sprout new leaves in Spring. If your plants look dead right now, be patient.  Lavender doesn't normally start sprouting new leaves until early to mid-May in our area, and this Spring has been cooler than any in the last 5 years. Plants will continue to sprout leaves along live branches and maybe some at the base of the plants too through the summer. If your plants are older and have lots of thin, bare stems, or brown leaves on top with green along at the base of the plant, they may benefit from a hard pruning this spring to encourage new growth from the base of the plant. This technique is most effective on the English lavenders. If your plants are older, and have thick woody stems, they may not survive a heavy pruning but you may want to try anyway. (See photos below).


Green sprouts at base of plant, thin bare stems above. Prune off 3/4ths of bare stems.

 New sprouts at base of plant


Green growth mostly around perimeter. Prune off gray top growth. 

Green growth around perimeter of plant



Plant too woody, opened up in middle, probably time to replace.

Lavender Hill Renovation Plans:

In the coming months we will be pruning plants, pulling out older plants, and planting new ones. Every few years a portion of our older plants need to be removed and replaced with young ones to keep a healthy population of productive plants.  Older plants are more susceptible to winter damage, so having a mix of plant ages keeps our field at its most productive. 

We are planning to try some new things this year including new classes and activities at the farm this summer, more on that in a future newsletter. 

Thanks for your continued patronage!

Martha Wilczynski

Lavender Hill Farm of Niles, MI

Copyright Lavender Hill Farm of Niles, MI  LLC , 2019