Harshell Excited for Another Sunflower Season

Hey there!  It’s been a while.  We’ve taken a little time away from our website as we’ve faced numerous challenges on our farm.

Let’s face it … if your livelihood is dependent on Mother Nature, then you’ve struggled the past few years.  Ever the optimists though, farmers keep slugging away, hoping that next year will be better.  In 2016 we had a terrible drought, followed by a monsoon wet season in 2017, then we had another drought in 2018.  As 2019 hit, it was the worst spring we had ever experienced with wet, cold weather in the spring that delayed planting of our crops by about one month.  Once the rains stopped … well they did just that … they stopped and another drought was upon us.  An early frost in September shut down the crops that never really did get going and then harvest was delayed into late fall (even early January).  All in all, we were glad to kick 2019 to the curb (when we finished in late January).

So here we are in 2020 and we got off to a great start with crops going in about one month ahead of last year and into some great soil conditions … and then the rains stopped … yet again.  Recording less than average rainfall so far this year and less than average heat units (sunshine) means that we are off to a slow start again but we are optimistic that this year will turn out just fine.  It must be a 5 year cycle which means that this is the 5th year and the crops will fill the bins.

Most of you are only here and reading this post, because you love our sunflowers as much as we do.  We are happy to let you know that we have planted 20 acres again this year.  Bird seed sales have been excellent as our friends, neighbours, and loyal customers have stepped up to support local during these difficult pandemic times.  Thank you for your love and support.

The sunflowers were planted on Blakeney Road, between Village of Blakeney and Panmure Road.  We are certain that everyone who uses the OVRT will enjoy the sites when full bloom hits this summer.  This year we tried something a little different.  We planted fall rye in the field last fall and then that crop was cut for cattle feed a couple of weeks ago.  Sunflowers were then no-tilled (no cultivation) into the stubble left from the rye crop.

The sign went up on the field last Saturday so that those who are interested can watch the sunflowers grow and monitor timing of the greatest show on earth … 20 acres of sunflowers reaching for the sky and the sunshine.

Thanks for your continued support of our family farm.  Take a drive and check out our crop signs which label the crops we grow in the fields we own/rent locally.  There is always something to see and learn when you take a drive to Blakeney.

Harold & Shelley

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