February 27, 2023
Storey by: C. Richard Campbell
Photography by: Dave Ferris
Melissa Schooley, Director of Operations spoke to the Club about Apple Hill Lavender Farm. There are different ways to communicate with an audience and each speaker has her or his own style when making a presentation. Forget the slick PowerPoint presentation. Fill two bags with Mason jars containing Medicinal herbs, add a healthy measure of enthusiastic delivery; combine with knowledge about your subject and you have the recipe for telling your story. 
The "farmers" of Norfolk County have adapted to changing environments and reinvented themselves to grow new crops and establish new agricultural-related businesses.  Many have made the transition from the profitable Tobacco crop to alternate crops. The Windham Centre-based Apple Hill Lavender Farm is composed of a 40-acre apple orchard, 10 acres of  Lavender fields, a commercial boutique, and a Medicinal Herb business. Apple Hill Lavender Farm is another excellent example of Norfolk County's  "farmers" adaptability, innovation, and risk-taking.
Gerry Goddard, President, The Rotary Club of Simcoe, Melissa Schooley, Director of Operations, Apple Hill Lavender Farm
With her bags of visual aids, Melissa Schooley introduced Rotarians to Medicinal herbs. The club learned about herbs such as mullet, willow bark, Siberian Ginseng, nettles, hops, lavender, and rose hips. Please note that the writer is relying on spell check for the correct spelling of these herbs. She carefully advised anyone contemplating taking plant medicine that they should recognize that it is medicine and consult their Physician before taking them. 
Apple Hill Lavender Farm and the boutique is open Wednesday to Saturday from 10:00 am-5:00 pm and Sunday from 11:00 am-4:00 pm May through November and 7 days a week all December.