Why Lavender? Why here?
Thanks for asking!
These questions are asked frequently, so a brief answer is provided here. Luling Lavender Fields is a family agritourism business owned by Richard and Erin Leavitt, their son, Lee, and dog, Piper. It is situated on a corner of Watson Ranch, a 500-acre cattle ranch owned by Erin’s parents, Bill and Lois Watson. The Watson family has deep roots in the Luling area. Erin’s 5x great grandfather, Thomas Wilson, came to Luling in the 1880’s as an immigration agent who needed to sell land that the railroad owned. He made numerous trips by boat to England, advertised in newspapers, and eventually brought back and settled 1000 families from Columbus to Luling to Seguin. Bill, a 7th generation Texan, grew up in Luling and dreamed of owning the land where the lavender farm now sits. As a child he often gathered arrow heads there. The land, which was once a rock quarry, had been frequented by many native American tribes who gathered flint and loved the miles of wild plum trees that grew along the banks of the creek.
In 2017 the Leavitts planted 2000 lavender plants on 2-acres of the 12-acre farm area. They built a store, relying heavily on Richard’s carpentry skills, and Erin’s experience owning gift shops. The store, built with shipping containers and with lots of windows, is a one-of-a kind structure that was brainstormed as it was going up. It opened in 2018, and is filled with every kind of lavender product imaginable. The amazing smell rewards everyone who walks through the door. Future plans include a stage with free weekend music concerts and greenhouses for year-round lavender plants and permaculture inspired flowers and produce. Small weddings and other events can be hosted at the stage. A Hipcamp RV Park is planned for summer 2022. The lavender field reached maturity in 2020 and was awash with beautiful purple blooms and 4’ tall plants. The freezes in the following two winters have damaged many plants and new methods of protecting the lavender are being planned. Visitors, who also lost plants during these odd freezes, understand and know everyone is working hard to make the field as productive as possible. Farming in Texas is always a leap of faith and a lot of work. The Leavitts are thankful for the support of the surrounding communities and all the visitors who enjoy the fresh air, natural beauty, lavender soda and ice cream, and being in the beautiful Texas countryside.
About Our Fields
Planted originally in 2017 with 2000 assorted lavender plants our upper, middle, and lower fields have changed over time. We have learned a great deal about the importance of getting the right plant for any specific growing zone. Our Zone is 8b. We can grow various English, Spanish, French, Sweet, Super Blue, Goodwin Creek, Fernleaf and more. When selling plants, we ask where it will be planted so that we can match you with the right plants. Small climate and soil changes from one location to another can make a big difference. Our best variety is an English that was cultivated for years in San Antonio, but now we can’t really fathom which variety of English it is. But we propagate and sell a lot of it because it is so hardy and beautiful. We are still experimenting with different cultivars that work for us but are moving away from open fields that are completely exposed to the extreme heat and the unusual extreme freezes of the last couple of winters in Texas. We want to maintain a lovely field but will be changing it to accommodate frost covers in the winter. We are also adding greenhouses so that we can propagate and protect young lavender plants. We learn more every year and are happy to share our knowledge with our visitors. Our plants come with growing instructions and our customers have seen great success.