90 Years of Los Poblanos: The Lord & Burnham Greenhouse

A group of workmen posing for a photo in front of a Lord & Burnham greenhouse that they built

Ninety years ago, Los Poblanos was a model experimental farm and the original headquarters of the 800-acre ranch owned by congress members Albert Simms and Ruth Hanna McCormick Simms. Home to the original Creamland Dairies, it boasted one of the finest purebred herds of Guernsey and Holstein cows in the Southwest. Sugar beets, alfalfa, oats, corn and barley were all grown on the property and purebred rams were raised with the intention of helping sheep herders of the state improve their flocks. In 1934, a Lord & Burnham greenhouse was constructed and utilized by Ruth, an active garden club member who experimented with growing new varieties of roses and chrysanthemums to sell commercially. 

Left: The Farm Shop shared space in the greenhouse while the old dairy barns were remodeled
Middle: Ruth's Crysanthemums c.1937, photographed by Laura Gilpin
Right: Lavender starts in the greenhouse

Organic Ingredients Year-Round

As part of our continued goal to preserve the agricultural history of Los Poblanos, a significant percentage of the property is dedicated to regenerative organic farming. Our commitment is expressed by growing ingredients organically, literally steps from the kitchen, year-round in the greenhouse where we sow, raise and harvest vegetables, herbs, and flowers for our culinary team. 

Lavender Propegation

When Dr. Armin and Penny Rembe aquired the property they continued in the Simms' tradition of experimental farming. In an effort to farm the fields at Los Poblanos while remaining true to regenerative practices in our high-desert climate, Armin planted the first Grosso lavender crop in 1999. A naturally occurring hybrid, Grosso lavender is sterile, meaning it does not produce viable seeds, so we propagate our lavender by hand. Each new plant is propagated from cuttings taken from one of our older plants. For about six months, the lavender grows in the greenhouse until they are large enough to be transplanted in the field. From its time as a tiny cutting in our greenhouse to a key ingredient in our lavender products, the life of a Los Poblanos lavender plant is vitally important to the future sustainability of Los Poblanos. 

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