The cultivation of lavender in Haute Provence is not the result of chance, nor of agronomic evidence. It is essentially an economic opportunity seized by the inhabitants of a vast region.
As early as antiquity, in Greek and Roman civilizations, lavender was already mentioned for its current uses. In the Middle Ages, lavender was still used as a medicinal plant or essence with precious virtues: it was very effective in the fight against the Great Plague.
And then, at the beginning of the 20th century, here comes the “Blue Gold”! The expansion of the perfume industry in Grasse led to a strong increase in the demand for perfume plants. The collection of aspic and fine lavender is becoming more widespread and organized. In the middle of the 20th century, mechanization and the better productivity of the plants favored the intensification of the lavender culture. Many farm families live mainly from lavender.
The end of the 20th century marks a turning point. In a very tight market, the number of lavender growers is decreasing, as well as the cultivated surface. The landscape is changing, lavender is “moving” more and more rapidly. In the 2000’s, the appearance of new markets, notably that of “well-being”, allows the number of producers to be maintained and tends to further improve the quality of the production.