Great Lakes Lavender Farm is a new member of the Great Lakes Lavender Growers (GLLG) organization, which focuses on promoting the growth and development of the lavender industry in the Great Lakes region. Lavender is a versatile crop with a variety of uses, including culinary, aromatherapy, and agritourism, making it a highly sought-after commodity. In this article, we will discuss the origins, objectives, and benefits of joining the GLLG, as well as the increasing interest in commercial lavender farming.
The Great Lakes Lavender Growers – A Network of Passionate Growers
The GLLG was established in 2014 to foster a network for information sharing and collaboration among commercial lavender growers. The organization also focuses on promoting the lavender industry through education and research and branding Great Lakes Lavender as a unique and valuable commodity. The GLLG has successfully created a thriving community of lavender enthusiasts and farmers working together to advance the lavender sector of the agricultural economy.
The Annual Great Lakes Lavender Growers Conference
One of the highlights of the GLLG calendar is the annual Great Lakes Lavender Growers Conference, held every March. The event brings together lavender farmers, industry experts, researchers, and enthusiasts to share knowledge, best practices, and innovations. The GLLG maintains a constructive relationship with the U.S. Lavender Growers Association (USLGA), and some GLLG members even serve on the national lavender organization’s board.
The Allure of Lavender Farming
The growing interest in commercial lavender farming can be attributed to various factors. Some producers seek to diversify their farms and create new revenue streams, while others are just beginning their journey into lavender production after a long career in a different field. As a result, many new growers have limited experience in lavender production and may not have any farming background at all.
The increase in demand for natural and cultural consumption in rural areas has also played a significant role in the growth of the lavender industry. Consumers are increasingly seeking value-added agriculture, direct marketing, and rural experience tourism, which has spurred the development of agritourism ventures like lavender farms. Lavender, with its versatility and broad appeal, is an ideal crop for small and mid-sized farms looking to diversify their offerings and capitalize on this growing trend.
Challenges and Opportunities for U.S. Lavender Farmers
Despite the enthusiasm surrounding lavender farming, U.S. farmers face some unique challenges. Major global supply chains are controlled by countries like France, China, New Zealand, and Bulgaria, forcing American growers to focus on developing localized markets. However, this also presents an opportunity for U.S. farmers to carve out a niche for themselves in the domestic lavender industry by leveraging the unique qualities of Great Lakes Lavender and focusing on the growing demand for locally-sourced products.
Joining the Great Lakes Lavender Growers – Benefits and Resources
The GLLG welcomes new members who live and/or farm within their five-state region and are currently commercial lavender growers. By joining the organization, members gain access to a wealth of benefits, including annual conferences, networking opportunities, webinars, and more. The GLLG website also serves as a valuable resource for both commercial growers and lavender enthusiasts, offering a wide range of information, from general growing tips to national grower studies.
Great Lakes Lavender Farm – A New Member of the GLLG
Great Lakes Lavender Farm is a new member of the GLLG, joining in March 2023. The farm is located in Rockford, Michigan, and is run by Sierra and Andrew. Sierra started cultivating her hobby farm with just 30 lavender plants in Traverse City in
2017, and over time, her love for lavender grew, as did her collection of plants and handmade products. Andrew, an entrepreneur with a background in marketing and small businesses, including Gone Beachin’ Apparel Company and Great Lakes Made, was intrigued by Sierra’s dedication and immersed himself in the world of lavender with her by attending lavender festivals, exploring craft shows, and even growing lavender from seed.
With years of research, experience, and their shared love for lavender, the duo decided to combine their backgrounds to create Great Lakes Lavender Farm. Their idyllic 4+ acre property boasts sandy soil and picturesque surroundings, providing the perfect environment for growing and nurturing lavender plants. The farm includes a greenhouse for year-round cultivation and an extensive range of homegrown and collaboratively crafted products, including lavender plants, essential oils, and shea butter to lotions, hand soap, bath bombs, and more. They also produce dried lavender bundles, buds, bug spray, linen spray from hydrosol, honey, lotion, shower steamers, lip balm, and an array of lavender-infused culinary delights such as lavender lemonade, sugar, and seasoning. To showcase their love for this versatile plant, they offer lavender apparel and merchandise as well.
As a small, family-owned business, Great Lakes Lavender Farm is committed to delivering exceptional products, fostering a sustainable approach to farming, and supporting their local community. They run the farm with the help of their four furry friends – two cats and two dogs. They invite people to join them on their journey by purchasing their products through various platforms, including their website, Etsy, Amazon, eBay, and Facebook. They can also be found at farmer’s markets, craft shows, and trade shows, where people can experience the magic of Great Lakes Lavender Farm in person.
By becoming a member of the GLLG, Sierra and Andrew are now part of a thriving community of lavender enthusiasts and farmers working together to advance the lavender sector of the agricultural economy in the Great Lakes region. They gain access to a wealth of benefits, including annual conferences, networking opportunities, webinars, and more. The GLLG website also serves as a valuable resource for both commercial growers and lavender enthusiasts, offering a wide range of information, from general growing tips to national grower studies.
The Great Lakes Lavender Growers organization has successfully brought together a community of passionate lavender farmers and enthusiasts in the Great Lakes region, providing invaluable support, resources, and opportunities for collaboration. As interest in commercial lavender farming continues to grow, the GLLG remains at the forefront of the industry, championing the advancement of the lavender sector of the agricultural economy and promoting the unique qualities of Great Lakes Lavender.
Great Lakes Lavender Farm is a new member of the GLLG, joining in March 2023. Their dedication to cultivating and promoting the versatility of lavender makes them a valuable addition to the organization. As a small, family-owned business, they are committed to delivering exceptional products, fostering a sustainable approach to farming, and supporting their local community. By becoming a member of the GLLG, they gain access to a wealth of benefits and opportunities to collaborate with other lavender enthusiasts and farmers in the region.
Together, the Great Lakes Lavender Growers and Great Lakes Lavender Farm are contributing to the growth and prosperity of the lavender industry in the Great Lakes region, one lavender plant at a time. Their passion for lavender blossoms into a thriving, eco-friendly, and community-driven haven, and their dedication to promoting and cultivating lavender will continue to inspire others in the industry for years to come.