Friday, June 26, 2015

The Month in Review (and it isn't over yet!)

Purple chairs spring out of one of our lavender beds.  They look as though they were planted there along with the lavender.

One of the photos taken by Rob Cardillo, the photographer sent by Country Gardens Magazine .  Rob placed our purple friend in the knot garden and he looks so good there, we decided that is now his new home!
June, being the month of weddings, led brides and grooms to come and pick lavender for their nuptials.  Aaahh, to be young and in love--of course, you would have to be in order to pick flowers in the middle of a very sunny, hot and humid day.
I think the bees actually posed and smiled for the camera.  I wonder how come they never do that for me?  
 A handmade quilt on display at Blooming Hill during the Lavender Festival.  Many hands make light work, or so they say.  These hands were all from one family.  Now that is a sure sign of  work made with love.
Have you ever watched the monthly sports report, "Spanning the World," from NBC sportscaster, Len Berman, where he finds some of the most unusual, wildest and wackiest sporting events that happened during that particular month?  I feel like that's the kind of thing we lived through here, although June may not have produced the wildest and wackiest of events in the world of lavender, here at Blooming Hill, but this month was all about surviving the lovely world of lavender.  Yes, I know you are sitting there thinking, "How hard can it be to survive living on a little peace of heaven surrounded by lavender and beautiful flowers?  Sometimes, it can be exhausting!  Fun and rewarding, but really exhausting!

Peter sculpting the knot garden, giving it a proper haircut at the beginning of June and getting it ready for a busy month.
All good things must come to an end but even better things will come of this one in particular.  The old golf green and sand trap, both once well used are now being transformed into future lavender beds out in the field.  "Why," you ask? I guess because P.Lorenz doesn't think we have enough to do already--hahahaha!
New beds in the forground and established beds farther afield were all in full bloom, just before Father's Day Weekend.
The knot garden perfectly coiffed and in full regalia by the middle of June.
Now--I'm not complaining but when I look back at this month of sunshine and warm to hot and humid weather filled to the brim with flowers, celebrations, weddings, graduations and Father's Day, I can honestly say that the lavender here at Blooming Hill was a part of just about everything listed above. You know how everything looks so doable, six months to a year in advance? It was just so easy to say yes to so many things and plan even more as the winter settled in and I had time on my hands to dream about summer.   Along came spring and as the month of June approached, we primped and pruned and prepared for all of the plans we made.  Yet, as the month of June approached, just glancing at the calender could make me shudder, juat a bit and, as we had anticipated, June went from zero to sixty miles per hour by day number three!
How's this for a fancy sign--just beautiful!
A tea group strolling through the lavender beds on an early June afternoon.
Sweet treats infused with lavender ready for serving at one of our June teas.
Wow!  There are a lot of people on the porch and under those tents having a meeting and enjoying tea while they are at it. This could be a scene on any given day during June, but it happened to be the Waterford Quilters Guild on this particular one. 
There were teas and talks and tours on top of painting and sketch club visits coupled with more teas and talks and tours.  The crowning touch to June was a visit from Country Gardens Magazine who did us the honor of photographing the farmlet just as the lavender was coming to peak.  After that, an opus in the form of our very first Lavender Festival, here at the farmlet, over Father's Day Weekend.
Artists from the Loudoun Sketch Club came twice this month.  Both days were extremely hot and humid but nothing seemed to deter them from their mission and love of painting throughout the property. (Not everyhting is about lavender here--almost everything--but not everything.)

Some of the artisits found shade.  Even though the sun always shines at Blooming Hill, it's nice to find a small respite under pine boughs in order to look out into the field and paint it in every shade of lavender and purple an artist can blend.
Rob the photographer and Marty the writer found every angle throughout Blooming Hill to capture in blooming still life as well.  We can't wait to see how Country Gardens Magazine interpretts the place!

That's gonna be a great picture--whatever it is that they see!

Really, I'm amazed that Peter and I are still standing! Well--we are actually now bending and crouching while picking lavender as the hottest of the hot weather approaches in the guise of July.  I might also add that July doesn't seem to express an interest in slowing down anytime soon either as we open the field on weekends for visitors to pick their own lavender.  So, the crescendo to our Blooming Hill season is still farther afield, as this year's harvest won't be totally down until the beginning of August but that, in the words of Martha Stewart, "Is a good thing!"
And then there was our first ever Blooming Hill Lavender Festival, set with vendors tents, tables and displays and even tea out on the lawn.  How very nice!

Bees Wing Cut Flower Farm brought a selection of cut flowers that blended in well with lavender and gave visitors even more beauty to take home and enjoy.
Of course, the farmlet manager (the one wearing the black fur coat) and the prodigal son were on hand greeting and assisting customers as well.  It would not have been a proper Blooming Hill affair if they had not been here.
A view of the field as you walk up the hill from the shop.
Alisa, Elena and William, lavender festival employee extraordinaires.
Have your tea here.  Have your tea there.  Have your tea anywhere at Blooming Hill.  That is
June, in a nutshell.
Eventhough June whizzed by in a flurry of activity, we are still here and looking forward to whatever may come next, planned and even unplanned.  In the end, meeting new friends and sharing with old friends at each and every Blooming Hill gathering is something that I and the lavender seem to thrive on. We don't have to span the world, globe or whatever to find something unusual or interesting or even prettier, because we have it all right here at the farmlet, where the sun always shines and the events and activities just keep coming.  Now, let me take a breather, sit down, and see what's next on the calender for July.
Another view of the field and Blooming Hill tent where visitors could learn how to weave a lavender wand, make a tussie mussie or just sit and enjoy the fragrance of lavender and the color purple.  As Alice Walker,author of The Color Purple,said in her book, "I think it pisses God off if you walk by a field of purple and you don't notice it."

Pat, (above) from the Potomac Unit of the Herb Society of America came to make tussie mussies with festival visitors. and Linda Sittig, (below) local author of Cut From Strong Cloth, a book about women in the textile industry during the Civil War came to share her story.  We had other vendors here, too selling their fancy vintage clothes and beautiful handmade pillows.

Even the devil deer couldn't stay away during the month of June.  He may look cute and sweet but he's going to grow up and do evil things, like eat my plants and freeload in my yard!  This one must have heard we serve our ice cream and who could resist that?

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