My lavender is just at the tail end of its bloom, but there was a nice article in the New York Times today about the lavender fields you can tour here in Sonoma:
It’s a bit late for a lavender visit this year, but you can plan for next year if that interests you, and the article gives a few other ideas for places to visit. The lavender at Matanzas Creek Winery is spectacular if you time your visit well — the article shows a gorgeous photo of Matanzas.
I grow mostly the Provence and Grosso varieties, but there are many varieties to choose from. I use lavender absolute in perfume rather than lavender essential oil because I think it smells less medicinal and has better lasting power. The absolutes I’ve used are from Bulgaria and France though, not from Sonoma. 🙂
If you visit to see the lavender, another stop you can make is to see the Bulgarian rose fields in bloom at Russian River Rose Company. You can take the official tour and see how they distill the roses, or you can go on one of their open house weekends and just wander the fields yourself.