Lavender August 03 2016, 0 Comments
Jean Giono quoted : “Lavender is the soul of Provence”
We can’t imagine Provence without its splendid fields of lavender! People who have ever been there will tell you the same thing: Magnifique (magnificent)!
The Provence’s most beautiful season takes place in June and lasts for 2 months, up to August. At this time of the year lavender fields are in full bloom, hues of colors and essence are unique. Driving, biking or walking between these prairies will make you feel in a postcard landscape!
Lavender fields in early summer
Keep in mind these dates for your future visit, the beauty of the lavender will turn your Provence escape into a perfect one. The color, the texture, the scent of these lavender landscapes create a unique atmosphere, you can only experience in Provence.
It is very common to see locals, adults and kids, harvesting lavender and pack it within little bags that they put in their home or in their cars. Many of Provence habitants experienced it in their childhood and now carry on the tradition. What is more natural and enjoyable than this ?
Lavender freshly harvested
The most famous lavender shot in Provence is the field of the Senanque Abbey near Gordes. A 12th century abbey where you can be sure to get a memorable photo. The best time to come is very early when the light is in the right position to catch up all the colors and the contrast of this beautiful and timeless landscape. On a practical aspect, it will be less crowded as well.
The Senanque Abbey
A lot of events in this area of Provence are deeply rooted with lavender, hence you can attend lavender festivals in Sault or Valreas where you can buy lavender products like oil, essences, fragrance, soap … and in all the open markets of Provence.
Festivals season is happening generally in mid of July. There is even a Lavender Museum in the village of Coustellet showing and relating the history of farming lavender in Provence.
Lavender is said to repel insects and is used in healing insect bites and appease burns. It can soothe headaches if you apply it to the temples and it helps you sleep if you have the flowers within your pillow. Dried lavender is used to repel moths in clothes closets. Lavender oil is also said to cure acne. The essential oil of Lavender has antiseptic properties, it was used in hospitals in the 1st world war to disinfect wards. You can use it in the bath for relaxation and you can found it in household products like room fresheners.
In your food:
Lavender is not traditionally used in cooking in France but some chefs are experimenting with it. Hence you can taste some handmade Lavender sorbet on a summer day in old and charming villages of Provence.
And of course it is used in some of our calissons. You can find it in our Cezanne collection or you can order a box of Lavender calissons in the Amandon collection (http://www.bygilles.com/collections/amandon).
If you plan a visit in Provence do not miss on this unique and scenic country of Lavender which is a cornerstone of this beautiful region.
About The Author:
Gilles Cailleaux is the Owner & Master Confectioner at By Gilles, an online French candy store based in Orange County, California. They sell traditional French confections called Calissons from Provence. Gilles is always ready to share his 25 years plus experience of candy making and baking with everyone and want to hear about your experience with his calissons. Gilles and his team are sensitive about taste and harmony. They prepare your packages with special care and attention.