Sunflower crops for tourist selfies

Sunflower crops for tourist selfies

Liverpool Plains farmer Ian Carter hopes to grow his best ever ‘sunflower selfie crop’ images for tourists as part of his 2022 summer cropping program.

Alongside other summer crops like cotton, Ian is planting three small patches of sunflowers as part of a regional campaign to attract tourists hungry for a road trip in January.

A sunflower field selfie is a bucket-list image for many a traveller and Ian has planned his plantings for just that purpose.

“Sunflowers are such a tall plant, so you don’t need a very big patch to get immersed into for a photo,” Ian says. “Once you walk out in the middle of a small patch of sunflowers you feel as though there is nothing else around you.”

Ian’s Carter’s first sunflower selfie crop in January this year.

Ian planted seeds in three staggered patches this year so the blooms last until the end of January.

“I just planted one patch on half an acre last year and it’s just got bigger and bigger, which is great,” Ian said. “It absolutely blew us away with how many people came out here last year. It was incredible.”

“We were not ever going to harvest the crop, so will let people pick them as well. People just seem to love sunflowers.”

Quirindi farmer and NSW Farmers member Ian Carter
The sunflower selfie crop on Ian Carters farm yielded hundreds of Instagram worthy images for visitors in January.

A local ‘Sunflowers on the Plains’ committee is joining in on the bloom, encouraging home gardeners and farmers to take part in a sunflower tourism trail.

A small-scale tourism project kicked off last year with residents in towns like Quirindi growing sunflowers around their mailboxes, at their front gates, and in pots. Like Ian, the committee is expanding sunflower selfie opportunities.

Businesses in town have been giving away free seeds to anyone who wants to brighten up their gardens, maps will be produced to guide people to where viewing points are, and there are competitions for the biggest and best sunflowers.

If you enjoyed this feature on sunflower selfie crops, you might enjoy our story on how canola fields attract tourists.

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