Students from the Boys and Girls Club in Chehalis got to go on a very literal field trip on Thursday morning, to a lavender field run by the Pace Family Lavender Farm west of Chehalis.
From 10 a.m. to the early afternoon, students got to learn about the varieties of lavender, paint rocks, enjoy the sunshine and learn about sustainable farming practices from farm owner Kristy Pace, whose son is a student at the club. This is her second season running the operation, where she grows mostly English lavender, popular for its strong fragrance. She has a few other kinds that are better for culinary purposes and other crafts.
On Thursday, she showed students her flower bed — a recycled bed frame she is using as a planter — her outhouse, a cabin filled with lavender in the process of drying and sent students home with painted rocks and bundles of the purple flowers, as per the request of many mothers.
“This really is a hobby farm. So I'm trying not to put too much business pressure on myself. But I'm trying to make it so that it is peaceful for me,” Pace said. “And then also being an outreach for the community. Bringing this group of kids here, (or) our neighbors right around the corner who didn’t even know we have this. … Trying to share with kids that might not get too far to see something, but also our community members.”
She said her goal was to teach kids they are capable of growing things themselves, whether or not they have a garden. Pace’s backyard was a lawn two years ago. After she was inspired by the Cowlitz Lavender Farm in Randle, she turned it into her own farm, teeming with bumblebees and soothing scents.
Pace recently hosted a class of women who wanted to create lavender wreaths. Throughout the season, she tries to have various offerings, classes and you-cut sessions. She recommended anyone interested in doing a similar event should reach out to her.
The farm is located on Jeffries Road in Chehalis. For more information, visit https://www.facebook.com/pacefamilylavender/ or head to the farm’s website at https://pacefamilylavender.com/.