Lavandula Swiss Italian Farm will mark lavender harvest with festival.

The lavender harvest at the Lavandula Swiss Italian Farm will once again be marked with a festival. 

With buildings dating from the 1850s, the farm, which is 10 minutes north of Daylesford, has been hosting festivals to mark the harvest of lavender since 1994.

The farm, which is set on 96 acres, has a strong Swiss Italian connection, and was a dairy farm right up until the 1970s, run by a family with 13 children. 

GETTING READY: Lavandula's Jack Larm with some of the lavender that will be on display at the Lavender Harvest Festival on Sunday. Picture: Provided.

GETTING READY: Lavandula's Jack Larm with some of the lavender that will be on display at the Lavender Harvest Festival on Sunday. Picture: Provided.

This year will be no exception to the annual celebration of the lavender harvest, with the festival set to host activities including country-folk music from the Ciderhouse String Band and the English folk dancing group, Brandragon.

In keeping with the Swiss Italian heritage, Faye and Boyd Thompson, descendants of the original owners of the property, will be giving an account of their travels in Ticino, Switzerland. 

Visitors will be able to tour the original farm buildings from the 1850s, which will be another part of the activities at the festival. 

There will be about 10-12 stalls at the festival, with a local and regional focus, selling handicrafts and products such as gourmet food, arts and craft.

“We will have a stall of cider and one stallholder makes up their own teas,” Lavandula’s Jack Larm said. 

The wood-fired oven at the site will also be in use on the day.

The cafe at the site, La Trattoria, will be open, with a menu that is based on European dishes and uses seasonal produce from the vegetable and herb gardens at the farm. It also sells lavender cordial and honey. 

The young won’t be forgotten either.

“We will have a local magician and a real-life fairy taking kids on magical walks.” Mr Larm said. 

There will also be face painting and local Italian chef, Mara Ripani, will also be running a pasta making demonstration, aimed at kids, to help develop their cooking skills. 

There will also be an opportunity to learn about the whole process of farming the main attraction, the lavender, from its initial harvest to when it is distilled to make oil.

Lavender flowers are in their peak condition for about eight weeks at this time of the year before they start to decline around February. 

Mr Larm said the festival offered an experience in the beauty of nature and history and that previous festivals had seen an estimated 2000 visitors to the Swiss Italian farm.  

“I think a lot of people are hungry for an experience away from cities and shops. The festival is focused on lavender but in many ways it’s family focused,” Mr Larm said. 

“I do love getting into the lavender.” He added. 

The farm hosts other events throughout the year, such as the Autumn and La Primavera festivals.

The activities will run from 10am until 5pm on Sunday.

Admission is $6 for adults and $2 for school age kids. Dogs are welcome but must be kept on a leash. 

The Lavandula Swiss Italian Farm can be found at 350 Hepburn-Newstead Rd, Shepherds Flat.

This story Lavender festival set to draw big crowd first appeared on The Courier.