Sunflowers to be celebrated

January 23, 2022 BY

95-year-old 'Uncle Mick' Ryan presents his daughter with beautiful early blooms. Photos: SURF COAST CELEBRATION OF SUNFLOWERS

LATER this month, grassroots group Surf Coast Celebration of Sunflowers will host its first Sunflower competition in Torquay.

The competition will be held on the lawn across from Front Beach Café on January 28 at 6pm, and everyone is invited to bring their homegrown sunflowers, with prizes to be won, or just come along to admire all the flowers.

Co-initiator of the Surf Coast Celebration of Sunflowers, Bronwyn McNamee said the idea for the competition was sparked when she and her partner and their close friend visited some friends in Kensington last year and came across a community sunflower competition that had been run annually for nine years.

“We thought ‘that’s a cheery thing to do… sharing a bit of hope, promise and good cheer’,” Ms McNamee said.

The three then started the group in August 2021 to share the joy of sunflowers, distributing sunflower seeds for locals to pick up and plant.

“By late August we got the Facebook page up and running and gathered a bit of interest. We’ve got a couple of hundred people on the Facebook page now, and we distributed about 2,000 seed packets until before Christmas.”

Ms McNamee said the event would be low-key and socially distanced to ensure it is COVID-19 safe, but would nonetheless bring joy to the community in this difficult time as the first sunflower competition.

“It’s going to be our first little gathering of folk who have been a bit interested in sunflowers.

“Sunflowers are an image of joy and brightness, it’s nice to have that a bit of that now.”

The event is open to all – including those who grow sunflowers and those who don’t – to come and celebrate sunflowers of all shapes and sizes.

Sunflower photos by local photographers will also be on display at the event.

Categories to be awarded at the celebration include:
The tiniest
The tallest
The flower with the heaviest head
The widest seed-head
The prettiest (potted or in a vase)
The most colourful
The most attractive multi-headed
The most joyful
The most unusual
Surprise entry

Given the number of categories, bringing sunflowers that have passed their prime
is acceptable.

Those who bring small-medium cut sunflowers are asked to bring them in a vase with water to keep the flowers fresh for display.

To find out more, head to the Surf Coast Celebration of Sunflowers Facebook page.