Blooms have started on some of our 35,000 plants. See Events for what's happening this weekend.
Yoga in the Lavender fields what better way to start your weekend mornings. Classes are Saturday and Sunday mornings at 10:30am. To register click on the Events Window.
Terre Bleu is a glorious setting for photography. Book the farm for a private shoot, take a photography class, have a photo taken by our onsite photographers or simply purchase an image from the farm. Its all coming this summer. All commercial photography requires a permit. For more details and fees contact email@example.com.
Do something a little different this summer. Terre Bleu organic farm hosts special events throughout the season, including our celebration to all things lavender. Click here to go to our events calendar.
The story of Terre Bleu lavender farm, apiary and horse stables began in 2011, with the planting of our first 10,000 lavender plants in 2012. Our inspiration began years earlier while vacationing in Quebec. Visiting a lavender farm, we were immediately awed by the spectacular fields of purple and the perfumed air that swirled all around us.
Inspired, we decided to run with this new interest and set about to learn all we could about the plant and how to grow it. Knowledge in hand, we still had no idea we would actually take that information and begin the journey to full-fledged lavender farmers. We were really quite removed from a rural, agricultural lifestyle, as we lived in the centre of Toronto, with successful careers in high tech, health care and as an Olympic triathlete.
Today, we hold careers off the farm but have found a healthy work-life balance in Terre Bleu, spending much of our free time on our passion for the outdoors, fresh air and a chance to build something literally from the ground up.
The vision for Terre Bleu is to create an exceptional agro-tourism experience to educate and entertain our guests. Our lavender farm, apiary and horse stables provide visitors with a place to stimulate your senses and revive the mind, body and soul. It is also our hope that as Terre Bleu grows we can leverage our success to enhance the community at large through special events and charitable efforts.
Our name Terre Bleu is French, translated literally it means “blue earth”. For us, it perfectly represents the rich blues and purples that burst forth from the land when our lavender fields are in full bloom. A blue earth is also a healthy earth full of fresh air, blue skies and wide-open spaces. It is natural in its beauty, regenerating itself through the cycle of life. OH and one more thing for our french friends as french canadians as well we do know that Terre Bleu should be written with an extra e to be gramatically correct, however we wanted a name that was unique to us and thus chose to deliberately drop the final e.
Whether you’re interested in learning about our farm and its unique elements; participating in activities such as photography, culinary and craft classes; or soaking up the spectacular scenery, there is something for everyone at Terre Bleu.
The perfect, family-friendly day trip from Toronto or nearby regions of Ontario, Terre Bleu is located on the edge of wine country and is a welcoming stopover for bicycling tours and cyclists who are in need of a different sort of break. We feature sustainable, organically grown products harvested from our own farm.
Learn about, experience and celebrate our connection to the land by taking part in any of the following agricultural-tourism or wellness activities offered at Terre Bleu:
The plants are slowly waking from their winter slumber as we say hello to spring. The opening weekend for the 2016 Season is upon us. Come and meander through the fields and breathe in the fresh, clean scent of spring. Watch as the blooms begin to appear near month end.
Start the month off with our Salute to the Horse - Canada Day Weekend. July is the month of English lavender, a prime time to view the Angustifolias in bloom, and mid July don't miss our Joie de Bleu Lavender Festival
August is the month of French lavender blooms and fragrant distillations. Admire the vibrant purple of our Grosso, and Phenomenol varieties and learn about how we carefully distill the purest of essential oils from this beautiful plant.
Terre Bleu organic lavender is the heart of our farm. The relaxing, natural fragrance of our plants inspires everything we do, and it follows guests gently around the property as they participate in our tours, activities and events.
Harvested throughout the summer as our blooms come and go at different times depending on the variety, our lavender plants are either distilled or dried into a range of natural products. Our products include essential oils, sachets, lotions, soaps, dried bouquets, wreaths, truffles, shortbreads, maccarons and lavender for many other culinary, decorative and aromatic uses.
Like most things agricultural, Lavender has a rich and long history.
In ancient Egypt, Lavender was used for embalming and cosmetics. Tutankhamen’s tomb revealed jars filled with soothing ointments resembling lavender. Ancient Romans recognized lavender for its healing and antiseptic qualities, and in deterring insects, and washing.
An early written record of lavender’s healing properties is from Nero’s military physician Dioscorides in 77 AD. He collected medicinal plants and described their medical uses in a five-volume work entitled De Materia Medica. Lavender, he noted, relieved indigestion, headaches and sore throats. Lavender too could be used to clean wounds and burns or treat skin ailments. Roman soldiers took lavender on campaigns with them to dress war wounds.
Lavender belongs to the mint family – a large family which includes herbs such as sage, thyme, rosemary, savory, oregano, balm and, of course, mint.
Not only does lavender come from a big family, it also stems from a very diverse species, with over 200 cultivars known. Each cultivar presents different sizes, shapes, petals, scents and yes, even colors. At Terre Bleu, we currently have six different cultivars planted. While some offer better oil production, others are great for decorative uses, some work best for cooking and some produce a unique white/pinkish bloom.
Many people often refer to lavenders as either English or French; however, true nomenclature and groupings are far more defined than that and historically there has been debate on the application of these classifications.
Check in often as we will be adding fun and tasty new recipes that we discover in our travels, on the web or are shared with us by friends of the farm. You can be sure we will try them out first in our own home kitchen. That means if it passes our taste test everything will have the Baird family seal of approval, no easy feat indeed.
Most people think Lavender oil is only a fragrant oil used to add a pleasant scent to things, or to give a fresh new taste to different foods. But did you know that Lavender oil can be used to remove glue, repel fleas, and reduce scaring for example. Continue reading on the next page and we will give you a whole list of interesting uses for Terre Bleu Lavender Oil.
While we can’t take much credit, as the honeybees in the Terre Bleu apiary do most of the work, our job is to extract the delicious honey from nature for you to enjoy in our range of organic products.
We begin by removing the honeycomb frames from hives in our apiary, uncapping the cells to open them and extracting honey from the frames in a machine called an extractor. The extractor uses spinning, centrifugal force to release the honey. It ensures the wax honeycomb remains intact and can be reused by the bees. We then filter the honey so it is pure and clear of chunks of wax and pollen.
Flavourful and sweet, our special lavender honey tastes of our beautiful lavender plants that our bees have been happily polinating throughout the season. Come visit the Terre Bleu apiary and discover one of natures sweetest treats for yourself. Email firstname.lastname@example.org to order our Premium Lavender Honey.
Honey produced by bees that have pollinated lavender plants has a unique and exceptional taste. Something bees even seem to know themselves, as honey bees will fly over many other types of flowers and available sources of pollen to get to their favorite – lavender. While infusing lavender into honey can produce lavender honey, true or pure lavender honey is a very rare commodity, and is naturally produced only by the bees themselves. The location of our apiary has been carefully sited to allow the bees to exploit this special nectar. Terre Bleu pure premium lavender honey offers the discerning palette a hint of lavender captured in the most natural way! Email email@example.com to order.
Beekeeping is one of mankind’s oldest agricultural pursuits, with artifacts discovered associated with honey harvesting dating as early as the Stone Age. Honeybees were imported into North America in the early 17th century by early European settlers, and since then we have continued to unravel the complexity of these highly social insects in order to gain a better understanding of honey production and the importance of honeybees in agriculture.
Like lavender, an early centre of beekeeping was Lower Egypt, with its extensive irrigated lands full of flowering plants. An early pharaoh’s title was the Bee King and Egyptian gods were also associated with the bee. The sanctuary in which Osiris was worshipped was known as the Mansion of the Bee.
Similar to lavender unguents kept in Tutankhamen’s tomb, temples kept bees in order to satisfy the desire of the gods for honey and for the production of medicines and ointments.
A symbiotic relationship has been established between flowering plants and honeybees, as the majority of crop production relies on insects to cross-pollinate each plant. Honeybees are responsible for 80 per cent of this pollination.
Tiny hairs cover the bee’s body and pollen clings to these hairs when the bee lands on a flower to collect nectar. It is then brushed off when the bee lands on the flower of another plant, successfully pollinating the plant.
Honeybees are highly social insects; they cannot survive as individuals, but work collectively to maintain the hive and ensure survival as a group.
The queen can be recognized by her long narrow abdomen, shorter wings and larger size, relative to worker bees. She is the only fertile female in the hive and is fed, protected and waited upon by house bees. She mates just once, storing sperm for future use when laying eggs. She may lay up to 2,000 eggs in a day. The queen secretes pheromones throughout the hive, assuring the worker bees that she is present, healthy and capable of producing eggs. Her lifespan is 2-5 years, at which point another queen will be raised to continue her duties.
We have a deep appreciation for equestrian activities at Terre Bleu, with five of our own horses kept on the property for the enjoyment of our family, friends and guests. With a strong equestrian community in eastern Ontario, our goal is to host activities and events at the lavender farm that highlight the importance of horses and their connection to the land, as well as provide an opportunity to share in their beauty and grace.
During special events, guests can visit our horses in the barn and watch them compete and train in our equestrian demonstration ring. On certain occasions in the winter and early spring, the horses may take guests on sleigh rides through the sparkling, snowy fields of Terre Bleu. Spring also brings the excitement of maple syrup season and our horses help out by carrying sap from the farm’s maple trees to the sugar shack for our maple syrup production.
We are planning on hosting various special equestrian events in the upcoming season, so please check our Events page for more information.
Renowned for their speed and strength, horses have an excellent sense of balance and have been used in many ways throughout history, from agricultural work, to warfare, to recreation and sport.
With over 300 breeds of horses in the world, domesticated horses have an average lifespan of 25-30 years and are considered adults by age five. A horse’s training begins at birth and heightens between the ages of two and four.
Horseback riding has a long and storied history in our society and helped build the world we live in today. Generally used for competitive equestrian sports, non-competitive recreational riding and working purposes, the relationship between horse and rider is paramount in any equestrian activity. So too, is that relationship here at Terre Bleu.
Horses add another special dimension to Terre Bleu. Each brings their own unique personality and energy to the farm. When they are not playing among themselves, or quietly grazing in the pastures, then they love to have us climb on board and take them for a hack about the farm, a trip over the jumps, or simply help us work to gather maple syrup and other farm specialities.
Let us introduce you to the herd.
When are you open for the season?
Our gates are open to the public from early June through to the end of August. We are open in the June on Saturday and Sunday from 11am to 4pm and on public holidays. For July and August we are open weekends Friday to Monday from 11-4pm. Please keep in mind that schedules and hours may vary depending on the weather and special events taking place at the farm. Please check our website terrebleu.ca or Terre Bleu Lavender Farm on Facebook for current information.
When is the best time to come?
Terre Bleu is a beautiful working farm to come and visit with or without bloom. When open we offer educational tours and information about how lavender is grown, maintained and harvested in Ontario and how we make our many specialtly products from this fragrant plant. We have nine different varieties of lavender in our fields, all of which bloom at different times during the summer season, which creates colour in the fields from June through to August. The Angustifolia or “English” varieties begin blooming late June, while Grosso and Phenomenal or “French Lavenders” begins to show colour in late July. July and August are typically the best times to see blooming, although this will vary depending on temperatures and weather patterns for the summer season. Also it is important to note that lavender is typically grown in far more temperate climates than Ontario. Unforunately for us our plants are frequently damaged or even killed during our cold harsh winters which can severely reduce their size and extent of actual blooming.
What is the admission fee?
Admission is $8.00 +HST* and free for children aged two and under.
* please note a higher entry fee may be charged during special events at Terre Bleu