Mt. Shasta Lavender Farm: High Desert Beauty

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“Here’s your sweet lavender
sixteen sprigs a penny
that you’ll find my ladies
will smell as sweet as any.”
Lavender Seller’s Cry – London England 1900

Located deep in the high desert off of highway A-12, just 20 minutes North of the city of Mt. Shasta, lies a jewel glittering beneath the sun. The Mt. Shasta Lavender Farm sprawls over a sunny slope of land at 35oo feet elevation. Visitors to the farm make their way up a long gravel driveway lined with juniper trees, and past a small vineyard where the heady smell of lavender and the drone of thousands of honey bees greet them. Mt. Shasta stretches into the sky, a magnificent backdrop to the rows of English and French lavender.


Lavender has long been used as a herbel remedy to remove nervous tension, facilitate sleep, relieve pain, disinfect scalp and skin, enhance blood circulation and treat respiratory problems. Used in potpourris and perfume, lavender oil is extracted from the flowers of the plant. Aromatherapy utilizes the blend of lavender oil with other essential oils such as cedarwood, pine, clary sage, geranium, and nutmeg.

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But it was relaxation and fun we were looking for when my sister, niece, husband, and I traveled to the Mt. Shasta Lavender Farm last week. For only three dollars, we picked a fat handful of 100 stems to take home and dry. A bubbling fountain gave us the opportunity to watch dozens of bees drinking their fill of the cool water.

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Inside the shop (which is actually the owners’ home when the farm is closed) we enjoyed a refreshing, complimentary glass of lavender lemonade, and could not resist buying a packet of lavender butter cookies whose sweet taste literally melted over our tongues. The gift shop offers a variety of items for sale including soap, artwork, lavender wands, essential oil, and garden hats.


Walking among the rows of lavender, stooping now and then to snip a few stems, visitors inhale the pungent fragrance of the plants and find themselves transfixed by Mt. Shasta’s peak. Small groups stroll through the lavender maze or pause to admire the view. Far from the bustle of any city, the farm serves as a moment of startling beauty and relaxation.

We filled our baskets and our senses with the sweetness of lavender and departed the farm with a bit of reluctance, rumbling down the gravel drive with the mountain at our backs.

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**All photos by Wendy Robards copyright 2009

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    • Sheri on July 6, 2009 at 12:45

    What a nice post!

    • Kathy on July 6, 2009 at 12:49

    Sounds like a wonderful outing. Do you know why the water is pink in the glasses with sprigs of lavender in them?

    • Wendy on July 6, 2009 at 12:52

    Thanks, Sheri 🙂

    Kathy: That is not water…it’s lemonade!

    • mari on July 6, 2009 at 12:54

    Such beautiful pictures. I love lavandar. 🙂

    • Megan on July 6, 2009 at 15:02

    Wow – looks like an incredible place! If it looks so great in pictures, I can’t imagine how awesome it must be in person.

  1. I am so impressed with these pictures and so envious of the trip. I only wished I lived closer so that I could visit this lavender farm. I grow lavender…and use the essential oils…and dry it, but not in the quantities shown in your pictures. The intoxicating smell of the plants must take over as you walk the gravel. The slightly purple hue of MT. Shasta makes a beautiful canvas that creates such a visual dimension to the violet hedges.
    So so beautiful….thank you.

    • Lori L on July 7, 2009 at 09:23

    What a wonderful post! I love lavender… love it. Even thinking about the smell is calming.

  2. Gorgeous photos, Wendy – and particularly so since it is cold here downunder.

    • EL Fay on July 7, 2009 at 16:03

    Gorgeous, gorgeous, gorgeous! Can you imagine living in a place like that?

    • Staci on July 7, 2009 at 16:39

    I’m blown away by how beautiful the scenery is!! I’m so envious of you being able to visit this gorgeous place!! Sounds like a delightful afternoon was had by all.

  3. That is beautiful!

    • Wendy on July 8, 2009 at 06:32

    Mari: I love lavender too!

    Megan: It is jaw-dropping gorgeous there…

    Wisteria: Glad you enjoyed the photos! Mt. Shasta is a gorgeous backdrop to the fields of purple…I couldn’t stop looking at it. I want to grow lavender someday (as soon as I get my yard landscaped!). We’re at the perfect elevation for it here.

    Lori: I agree – it is very calming.

    Whisperinggums: Thank you! We could use a little of your cooler temps here!

    El Fay: No I can’t!!! *laughs* I don’t know how they get anything done up there it is so beautiful!

    Staci: We had such a great time. I am so grateful that we live close enough to places like this to visit them…

    Sheila: I think so too!

    • Tara on July 8, 2009 at 07:45

    Those photographs are stunning! Glad you had a nice trip.

  4. Oh, that looks gorgeous! I bet it smelled delectable as well. You probably felt really relaxed afterward, since lavender’s known for that…

  5. These are such beautiful pictures! Thanks for sharing them!

  6. It looks like a beautiful place. I’m going to have to go and visit it one day. Thanks for the great post.

    • Teddy on July 8, 2009 at 21:19

    Wow Wendy, they should pay you for this write up! Beautifully written and the photos are stunning. I want to go there!

    One of my favorite teas is Earl Grey with lavender. I get it in Banff and can hardly wait until we pass through there on our way to Calgary so I can stock up. Lavender lemonaide sounds awesome too! I may have to do some experimenting.

    • Sandy on July 9, 2009 at 03:32

    Oh, I see a honeybee on the lavender! I love honeybees and will get right down in the lawn to watch them do their thing.

    I’ve never been to Mt. Shasta but it looks beautiful. Another place on my list to visit.

    Thanks for sharing.

  7. wow, that is just gorgeous!

    • diane on July 11, 2009 at 04:43

    simply gorgeous photos. looks like such a peaceful place. thanks for sharing!

    • Wendy on July 11, 2009 at 06:39

    Tara: Thank you!

    Caryn: The smell is WONDERFUL! And yes, the relaxation effects lasted awhile 🙂

    Rhapsody: You’re welcome!

    Vasilly: Oh, you really should go someday. They are only open for one month in the spring/summer to the public…so it is a shallow window, but so worth the trip.

    Teddy: Thanks *blushing* Actually, I emailed them the link, but they have not responded (my guess is they are out straight harvesting lavender!). The lavender lemonade was delicious!

    Sandy: If you like honeybees, this is the place to go. There were thousands of them there!

    Diane: You’re welcome 🙂 It was peaceful for sure!

  8. Have you heard of Tuscan Heights Lavender Gardens?

    About 125 South of Montague, CA…Not far from Redding, CA is another unique and beautiful speciality lavender garden. Tuscan Heights Lavender Gardens.

    At Tuscan Heights, we grow over 200 different varieties of lavender, along with over 150 different culinary herbs, edible flowers and a beautiful boutique vineyard. Our farm is very different from Mt. Shasta Lavender farm and I believe our farms complement each other. Mt. Shasta is such a beautiful location… and the amazing purple fields of English and lavandin lavender at the base of the Volcano… well, it’s quite spectacular!

    If you visit our gardens at Tuscan Heights, you will experience something equally spectacular, but different at the same time… You can walk through our fields of over 200 different varieties of lavender, pick kiwi gold raspberries in our beautiful herb gardens, sit in a peaceful secret scented garden next to the small waterfall, while sipping some delicious lavender tea or lavender lemonade, take home a HUGE lavender bundle, learn how to weave a traditional lavender wand, and learn how we steam distill our lavender flowers to make our pure essential lavender oil that is used in all of our organic and all natural bath and body product line…

    If you are in the Northern California region, we sure hope you can check out Tuscan Heights Lavender Gardens, next season!

    Until then, check us out on the web at:

    • Wendy on July 20, 2009 at 14:13

    Lynette: Thanks so much for telling me (and my readers) about your farm! I had no idea there was such a place so close to us…I will try to get out to visit SOON before the end of your season!

  9. A very late comment, but I just had to tell you how much I enjoyed this post! I visited the lavender farms in Oregon two years ago and had such a fun time taking pictures of the valley near Mt. Hood. We were just in the Portland area last week and visited the Oregon Garden in Silverton. My, the lavender was in full bloom (and full of bumblebees!). Smelled sooooooo good. Your photos are gorgeous, Wendy. Thanks for the beautiful post.

    • Wendy on July 23, 2009 at 06:01

    Les: Coming from a photographer as good as you are, I really appreciate the compliment on the photos 🙂 This was my first visit to a lavender farm and I loved it for all those reasons you give in your comment!

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