Scenic photos and support for a good cause

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Puddleford Tree Farm owners Matthew and Gail Whitney showcase a section of their field of sunflowers. Each year, the couple plants a field of the vibrant flowers as a fundraising effort for the Chatham-Kent Alzheimer Society.

 The Whitneys are back at it again.

Matthew and Gail Whitney, owners of Puddleford Tree Farm in East Kent, have planted 20,000 sunflowers this year as a fundraiser for the Chatham-Kent Alzheimer Society.

They invite visitors to stop by to take photos in the beautiful field, and maybe take a few of the huge flowers home with them.

“We are growing sunflowers to raise funds for the C-K Alzheimer Society,” Gail told The Voice.

The effort dates back to 2021, the middle of COVID.

“We decided to open a field up – my husband always plants a cover crop in that field. I encouraged him to plant sunflowers instead and we invited people to come out and walk around,” Gail said,

They charged $5 per car for people to come, and offered people the chance to take the flowers home with them at $1 apiece.

All the funds raised went to the local branch of the Alzheimer Society.

“People were thrilled to be able to get out and move around and not to have to wear a mask,” Gail said.

It’s now an annual tradition to plant the sunflowers at Puddleford.

“Instead of us planting a cover crop of radishes, which just get plowed under, we now do sunflowers,” she said.

Puddleford Tree Farm is open daily from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. Payment is made on the honour system at 22896 Scane Rd.

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