Kansas sunflowers begin to bloom
Sunflower blooms are short — for those who want photos or to take walks in fields of sunflowers, they have about two weeks each year.
The sunflower is the state flower of Kansas.
Depending on when planted sunflowers could bloom any time from mid-August to early September. Kansan photographer Michele Clark found two fields in bloom this week — one near Maize and the other near Clearwater
According to Kansas State Research and Extension, the sunflower is an annual flower that can be grown for the flowers or harvested for seeds used for oil or culinary purposes. The composite flowers have both ray (the showy "petals") or disk flowers (that mature into seeds). The rays may be bright yellow, gold, orange, rust or maroon.
The website kansasfarmfoodconnection.org lists four large fields open to the public in the region:
Kansas Maze at Gaeddert Farms, 13209 E. 82nd Ave, Buhler will host an annual Sunflower Festival Aug 21 to Sept 11. The patch will host Sunflower painting classes from 6:30 to 8 p.m. Aug. 26 and Aug 29. For more information visit https://www.kansasmaze.com/
Walters’ Pumpkin Patch. 10001 NW US Highway 77, Burns , started as a hobby farm with small pumpkins and grew from there. They’ will host a Sunflower Festival from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. August 21, 22, 28 and 29 . For more information visit https://www.facebook.com/walterspumpkinpatch
Klausmeyer Farm and Pumpkin Patch in Clearwater is a dairy farm that also grows sorghum, corn, soybeans, wheat, sunflowers and pumpkins. Due to drought, the farm closed its sunflower patch Aug. 13. For more information visit https://www.facebook.com/Klausmeyerpumpkinpatch/
The Peterson Farm Brothers have open up their sunflower field near Lindsborg for visitors. They charge an entrance fee and a fee for cutting blooms, and estimate blooms will start Aug. 28. For more information visit https://petersonfarmbrothers.com/sunflower-trails/