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Lavender Farming: Market Demand, How to Grow, and Challenges

Lavender has many uses, be it as a fragrance or medicine. And that makes the herb well in demand. Knowing the right ways to plant and farm would give you, as a farmer, an edge over your peers in making profits and improving your livelihood.

Let us take a look at lavender farming. We’ll cover the plant’s demand and look at the methods we can utilise to improve the plant’s growth. But, of course, no plant is without its fair share of issues and challenges. So we shall also look at the challenges involved in growing the crop. Let’s get on with it, then!

Lavender Demand: Why is the fragrant herb in demand?

For a long time now, lavender has been widely used for its soothing fragrance, paired with the plant’s medicinal properties. The usage of lavender dates well back centuries before right now. That’s all well and good, but how is the demand-driven in this time and age? Here, we find out: 

First, lavender oil has several medicinal values and is an imperative ingredient in aromatherapy, as it refreshes and calms the mind. The oil made from the plant also has anti-inflammatory and antiseptic properties. If that doesn’t make it more than impressive already, it can also fight acne, and most of all, it can battle depression.

Secondly, people all over the world are now turning towards more all-natural products in the cosmetics industry. And lavender being lavender has its uses in acne reduction and hence comes in handy in many cosmetics. Not just that, it is also used in fresheners and sprays due to it being fragrant.

What’s more, is the fact that lavender is also being used in food and beverage industries to add flavouring to many food varieties! Wild, right? 

Let’s now talk about the elephant in the room. There is not enough supply to meet this demand in India or anywhere in the world actually. So it is safe to say that getting into the business of growing lavenders and exporting or selling them will result in big opportunities to drive home the big bucks!

Lavender Farming Tips

Lavender is perennial. That’s right. This means it can grow throughout the year! However, even though that is the case, going in with prior research and knowledge can help you more often than not, so let us arm you with all the knowledge that you need to grow lavenders on your farm: 

Preparing the Soil

First of all, you will have to prepare your land to plant the crop. Not just that, you will have to make sure that the climate that you are planting the crop in suits the crop that you’re planning to plant. In this case, make sure it resembles the Mediterranean climate. Besides that, here are some steps you should follow to prepare your soil. Make sure that your soil is well tilled before beginning the preparation process. You can use any cultivator mounted on a Hav Tractor to finish the job.

Step 1: Test your soil pH level to know if your soil can grow lavenders. The ideal numbers are between 6.5 to 7.5. If it’s more acidic, i.e., it has a number lower than 6.5, you add lime to the soil. And if it is basic, add sulfur to lower it. Simple, right?

Step 2: Now, for the next step. Draining your soil. Improve the structure and drainage of your soil by adding sand and perlite. The ideal soil for lavender consists of 5% organic matter, 45% mineral, and 50% pore space. Pore space allows for the aeration of the soil and good drainage of water.

Planting the Lavender

Here’s what you should be doing to plant the lavender if you’re looking for optimal growth and high yield:

Get the plants from the nursery. Make sure you choose the right variety and healthy plants even at that. 

Then, dig holes large enough to house the plant as it begins growing roots. Make sure your land is fertile for the plant to grow right, but fertilising the land too much would be redundant, as lavenders don’t need rich soil to grow in.

Only water the plants when your soil looks dry, not before. This is common practice because if the land gets soggy, it can result in your lavenders getting root rot and other deadly fungal infections. 

Ensure they have 2 to 3 feet of space between the plants, as they require air circulation to grow well. 

Lavender Harvest

Harvesting the fragrant plant would involve the following steps. And if done right, you can enjoy a high yield and make impressive profits. Not just that, as the competition for the plant, is low, you can also rake in an impressive buck by catering to the rising demand. 

Wait till half of the plants in your field have sprouted buds. This usually happens in springs, but as they are perennial, you don’t have to worry about when. And the budding flowers can give you more chances to extract the oil when compared to the fully blossomed lavender. 

Now for the when. Harvesting when the morning dew still hasn’t left the plants would be ideal, as the quality and potency can be preserved when harvested. 

Choose the flowers that look fresh, and harvest just the flowers or along with the stem as well. It depends on what your purpose is with the plant. 

Conclusion

Lavender is one of those plants which can get your farm business booming. As it has less competition in the market, and rising demand to go with it, it is only natural that this could be seen as a business opportunity with potential. So get into it, plant your lavenders, and rake profits!

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