If you’re looking to add lavender to your roster of cooking herbs, buy lavender designated as culinary. Some retailers sell it dried and prepackaged, while others sell it in bulk so you can buy what you need.
Most sources listed below sell imported lavender; if you prefer to buy American-grown, check out the list of Washington area lavender farms below.
Grocery and specialty stores selling dried lavender
Balducci’s 10323 Old Georgetown Rd., Bethesda, 301-564-3100; 600 Franklin St., Alexandria, 703-549-6611.
Bazaar Spices 1309 Fifth St. NE, 2130 Eighth St. NW, 202-379-2907.
Blue Nile Herb & Spice Company 2826 Georgia Ave. NW, 202-232-3535.
David’s Natural Market 871 Annapolis Rd., Gambrills, 410-987-1533; 5410 Lynx Lane, Columbia, 410-730-2304.
Dean & DeLuca 3276 M St. NW, 202-342-2500.
Good Life Organic Market 485 Ritchie Hwy., Severna Park, 410-544-9515.
La Cuisine 323 Cameron St., Alexandria, 703-836-4435.
Penzeys Spices 1048 Rockville Pike, Rockville, 301-738-8707; 513 W. Broad St., Falls Church, 703-534-7770.
Roots Market 5805 Clarksville Square Dr., Clarksville, 443-535-9321.
Smile Herb Shop 4908 Berwyn Rd., College Park, 301-474-8791.
The Common Market at Evergreen Square Shopping Center 5728 Buckeystown Pike, 1-B, Frederick, 301-663-3416.
The Spice & Tea Exchange of Georgetown 1069 Wisconsin Ave. NW, 202-333-4540.
The Spice & Tea Exchange of Alexandria 320 King St., Alexandria, 571-312-8505.
Williams-Sonoma Bethesda Row, 4824 Bethesda Ave., Bethesda, 301-718-3071; 2700 Clarendon Blvd., R150, Arlington, 703-248-8150; 825 S. Washington St., Alexandria, 703-836-1904; 1705 Annapolis Mall Rd., Annapolis, 410-571-0589; 10300 Little Patuxent Pkwy., Suite 1020, Columbia, 410-884-0324.
The season will be over around mid-July. Here are just some of the farmers’ and produce markets that offer fresh, locally grown fresh and dried lavender bunches or plants. (The FreshFarm Silver Spring market has multiple vendors selling lavender.) Other farmers markets in our region seasonally offer lavender; check with the ones near you. A great many garden centers likewise carry blooming lavender in pots this time of year, but be sure to ask for unsprayed culinary lavender. If possible choose the very sweet English lavenders first, then French; Spanish lavenders are not suitable for cooking.
Annapolis: 110 Compromise St. in the Donner Parking lot.
City Center: I Street NW (between 10th and 11th Streets).
Crystal City: Crystal Drive, between 18th and 20th Streets.
Dupont Circle: 20th Street NW between Massachusetts Avenue and Hillyer Place.
Foggy Bottom: 23rd and I streets NW Walkway.
Silver Spring: 911 Ellsworth Dr., Silver Spring.
Penn Quarter: Eighth Street NW, between D and E streets NW.
Crofton Farmers Market 1691 Crofton Pkwy., Crofton. 410-693-3126.
Palisades Farmers Market MacArthur Boulevard and 48th Place NW.
Lavender and herb farms and gardens
The best places to find a good variety of both fresh and dried lavender for cooking are regional lavender farms, both on-site and in their online shops. Specifically look or ask for angustifolia or “English” lavender varieties or blends; perhaps surprisingly, these are actually sweeter and better for cooking than the more famous French kinds. The peak blooming season in our area is June and July, so most regional farms provide picturesque fields or gardens and fun pick-your-own opportunities now. Each farm is unique, and many are open only seasonally or on weekends, so check websites for hours, attractions and products.
Additionally, one American lavender farm grows only culinary lavender and sells six different top varieties online — Buena Vista, Betty’s Blue, Royal Velvet, Folgate, Imperial Gem and Melissa (a pink kind) — at nielsenvillage.com. If you’re interested in trying out or comparing single varieties (each is unique), that site is handy.
Beagle Ridge Herb Farm 1934 Matney Flats Rd., Wytheville, Va. 276-621-4511.
Calico Fields Lavender 108 Immanuel Lane, Millington, Md. 410-928-3505.
Evergreen Lavender Farm 7169 Old Evergreen Rd., Appomattox, Va. 434-352-9562.
Hope Hill Lavender Farm 2375 Panther Valley Rd, Pottsville, Pa. 570-640-4498.
Lavender Fields Herb Farm 11300 Winfrey Rd., Glen Allen, Va. 804- 262-7167.
Lavender Fields at Warrington Manor 18864 Cool Spring Rd., Milton, Del. 302-684-1514.
Lovemore Lavender 1418 Georgianna Lane, Owings, Md. 410-610-8940.
Peace Valley Lavender Farm 802 New Galena Rd., Doylestown, Pa. 215-249-8462.
Seven Oaks Lavender Farm 8769 Old Dumfries Rd., Catlett, Va. 540-272-7839.
Springfield Manor Lavender Farm 11836 Auburn Rd., Thurmont, Md. 301-271-0099.
Soleado Lavender Farm 23611 W. Harris Rd., Dickerson, Md. 301-922-5964.
White Oak Lavender Farm & The Purple WOLF Vineyard 2644 Cross Keys Rd., Harrisonburg, Va. 540-421-6345.