Joan Taylor, one of my favorite Lazy Daze travel buddies, recently discovered a unique organization, Harvest Hosts, and announced its benefits on one of the Lazy Daze RV forums. In its embryonic stages, this network of overnight stopping places was offering annual memberships for $20.00. How could I resist such a bargain?! Here's the deal: Harvest Hosts has enlisted wineries, farms and orchards to allow self contained recreational vehicles to stay on their properties overnight, free of charge.
Joan and I spent a delightful May afternoon and night at Purple Haze Lavender Farm in Sequim, WA.
The participating "hosts" are located in peaceful, rural surroundings and offer opportunities to "tour wineries, pick your own fruit and produce and to stock up on cheeses and other natural products." So inevitably, the stops aren't "free" after all, but they are definitely an excellent alternative to the standard camping experience. New "hosts" are being added as we speak, and Harvest Hosts now includes distinctive, diverse overnight stops from coast to coast.
Lavender oil is distilled right on Purple Haze's premises. When fully loaded, the retort vessel will contain 700 pounds of lavender flowers. Depending on the variety, these flowers will yield one to eight pints of pure essential lavender oil. Distillation takes place in August and September; we missed it by a few months!