Lavender to be used in Olympic Bouquets

A farm in Hampshire has begun the process of harvesting stems of lavender. The lavender is being harvested because it is going to be used in the flower bouquets to be presented to the medal winners at the London Olympic Games.

Long Barn Lavender which is situated close to New Alresford is currently preparing over 300,000 stems which will be used by florist Jane Packer who is preparing the bouquets for the games.

She will be combining the lavender with British roses and traditional British herbs to make 4,400 flower bouquets. Director Richard Norris said that having to produce that amount of lavender before the games did seem a huge task and he did worry whether the task would be completed in time.

The company harvests the Royal Purple variety in the field by hand using traditional sickles. However the recent bad weather to hit the UK had the organisers worried the lavender might have been destroyed in the torrential downpours. The staff were concerned the lavender might not be ready in time for the Olympics because it was coming into colour later than expected.

However Mr Norris did say that the improving weather meant the lavender was coming into colour at exactly the right time. He said that the fact there is an international event taking place and he is providing the flowers for the bouquet, it is an incredible story.