Smokey Cat Lavender Farm

Many readers have probably heard of the Lavender Fields of Provence, but a lesser known fact is that there is a thriving lavender farm in Federalsburg. Nestled on three quarters of an acre behind the Brohawn’s home, the lavender grows in 22 rows, fragrant and robust. In June and July, as the purple buds begin to show, bees come calling.

When the bees arrive to pollinate the lavender, it’s time to harvest it. 

“When the bees arrive, you know it’s time to harvest the lavender,” explains Debbie, who runs Smokey Cat Lavender Farm with her husband, Charles. There are so many uses for lavender; they are too numerous to list. Lavender enthusiasts come from all over in June and July to the U-pick lavender field and Shoppe.

Armed with scissors and a basket, folks head to the field to harvest the lavender, which includes seven different varieties. For those who wish to purchase homemade lavender products, including soaps, lotions, scrubs, salts and edibles, Debbie also operates the Smokey Cat Lavender Shoppe on site.

When Debbie and Charles became empty nesters, they decided to start a new hobby. Debbie yearned to “look out the window and see a field of flowers.” Together they researched what type of flower would grow well in their yard and lavender was the overwhelming winner. “It’s such a pleasant thing to watch the bees and look at the flowers,” she added.

Not only is lavender a beautiful garden plant, it’s a well-rounded, intuitive and resourceful herb, according to Debbie. It grows well in their sandy soil and the full sun that their beautiful yard provides. They planted 22 rows in 2015 and opened the Shoppe and U-pick in 2018. In 2019, the couple hosted the first Lavender Festival, which was a huge success, attracting 750 people. While the festival was put on hold this summer due to concerns over COVID-19, the festival will return on June 12, 2021.

While both Debbie and Charles work full time, they operate the Shoppe and U-pick operation in June and July from Thursday through Saturday from 1 to 4 p.m. and by appointment. Smokey Cat Lavender Farm is located at 5090 Long Swamp Road in Federalsburg. Debbie also operates an online store year-round at For more information, visit Facebook @Smokey Cat Lavender or call 410-829-9253.

While Pierre is the smoky cat on the farm, Leo is great company in the rows of lavender.
While there are 45 different species with over 450 varieties of lavender, the Brohawns grow seven at Smokey Cat Lavender Farm.

Did You Know?

  • Lavender is a natural bug repellent.
  • Massaging lavender essential oil into aching joints and muscles provides added pain relief.
  • Lavender essential oil diluted with water soothes minor burns.
  • A few dabs of diluted lavender oil on acne spots will reduce inflammation and inhibit an overgrowth of acne-causing bacteria.
  • Adding up to five drops of lavender essential oil to a hot bath at bedtime will induce a good night’s sleep.
  • A lavender sachet in the closet will repel moths and silverfish.
  • Rubbing lavender essential oil on the temples will reduce headache pain.
  • Use lavender infused oil for itchy, dry skin.
  • Sprinkle lavender essential oil on your pillow at night for a peaceful night’s sleep.
  • Drinking tea with dried lavender flower heads, chamomile, and oat straw is calming.
Debbie Brohawn uses a Japanese sickle to cut the lavender.
Not all varieties of lavender dry with the telltale vibrant purple hue.
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Allison Rogers


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