Years ago, I was strolling through the Kapiolani Community College's Farmer's Market on a Saturday. I was drawn to this booth as I noticed an abundance of the color purple on their tables.
At the time, I wasn't fully aware of lavender or it's health benefits or it's insanely tasty flavor! I purchased a few tea bags and have been changed ever since! I told myself that one day I'd visit this place that created such masterpieces. Finally, that day has come! Join me as I take you through a VISUAL tour of ALI'I KULA LAVENDER FARMS.
Located in Kula, Maui on 13.5 acres of land at 4,000 feet in elevation is this small, local business that grows just about 55,000 lavender plants and 45 different species (and that number is increasing).
We were awesomely greeted by a young lady named SARAH ADAMS (a good friend of mine) who pulled herself away from the office on property to take us on a personal tour and show us the beauty of this invaluable small business. Sarah has worked with ALI'I KULA LAVENDER FARMS for a very, very long time and has educated herself thoroughly in EVERYTHING Lavender! She has a wealth of knowledge and I'd love to encourage anyone looking to take a tour around the property to specifically ask for her! Throughout the tour, I felt like I was in a very hip and trendy biology class.
Let's meet Sarah and take a look at a few species of Lavender on the property!
At this point you're probably wondering, who's the owner of the farm? How did it all begin?
Well, the founder was an agricultural artist and a master of horticulture, here he is (below) come join me and say ALOHA to ALI'I CHANG!
"Though lavender is not native to Maui, it has acclimated well to the majestic mountain-slope with style and grace. Thriving in Kula’s Mediterranean climate, AKL’s lavender blooms year round in the cool, dry climate.Lavender was given to Ali’i in 2001 by a dear friend and being the consummate gardener that he was, he planted the herb with the best of intentions to have it breathe and blossom into what AKL is today—a true work of art!"
The farm was filled with a beautiful array of lavenders and I could talk all day about it but you're really going to have to go there and see for yourself! BUT, I will share with you a few pieces of the farm that I thought is extremely interesting.
ALI'I KULA LAVENDER FARM is not just a small business. They are a small business that supports OTHER small local businesses! I LOVE SEEING THAT!
We were invited to take a look around in their gift shop and what I found was interesting collaborations with other small local businesses.
My favorite piece that I took home with me (and yes, I used it all already!) is....
The flavor of this Lavender Strawberry Pepper Jam is EXACTLY like it sounds. The first flavor you taste is the lavender, then the sweetness of the strawberry takes control and finally the bite from the pepper seals the deal! It goes so well on toast.... or just eating it with a spoon. #GuiltyAsCharged
When you visit, don't forget to try EVERYTHING in their kitchen! I had a LAVENDER coffee with a LAVENDER scone with honey and jam. Gosh, I wish more places would carry these products! It was so perfect!
You can take this snack on the outside patio and gaze over the ledge at the panoramic view of the beautiful island of Maui!
Now, don't be mislead to think that all you're going to see is lavender at this expansive property...no, no, no, ALI'I KULA LAVENDER is getting set to expand their reach once more.
They are growing more fruits, vegetables, flowers, and shrubs that will eventually lead to a.... ooops! be sure to follow them on Instagram to stay up to date with their advances!
MY FINAL THOUGHTS...
Being so high up in the mountains, I really felt relaxed and calm. This small local business is FULL of LIFE. When I asked about their irrigation system, I was told that a majority of the watering comes from the sky. The farm is located in a lush environment that provides perfect natural irrigation throughout the year.
I would personally like to thank SARAH ADAMS for the tour and snacks (the scone is my favorite). I'd also like to send a big MAHALO to the lovely ladies in the gift shop for their smiles and Aloha!
As ELEV8 HAWAII stands, if you ever get a chance to visit MAUI, get yourself up to Kula and stop in, walk around and brief the addicting scent of fresh lavender at ALI'I KULA LAVENDER FARM!
Ali'i Kula Lavender Farm
1100 Waipoli Rd.
Kula, Hi 96790
Tel: (808) 878-3004