Summer, Sunshine, Sunflowers and Smiles

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There is something about a sunflower that makes us happy. How can you not smile when you see a towering sunflower with its head lifted up toward the sky, as if to say, “I am strong, I am proud, I am bright and cheerful.”

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I will take any opportunity I get to gaze upon the beloved flower of the summer, so when I heard there was a field of sunflowers close to Murfreesboro, which is only 30 minutes east of Nashville, Tennessee, I had to grab my camera and go.

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This sunflower field is owned by Batey Farms. Batey Farms is located off of I-24 East, just off of the Medical Center Parkway exit at 3250 Wilkinson Pike in Murfreesboro, directly behind the Rutherford County Chamber of Commerce.
As soon as you get off the interstate, you will turn left if you are coming from Nashville onto Medical Center Parkway.
As soon as you cross over the interstate, look to your left and your jaw will drop!

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In a field, as far as you can see is a sea of yellow. All you can say is, “Oh my goodness!” But, before you get in an accident because you are too busy gawking at the sunflower field, get in the left lane and turn into the Rutherford County Chamber of Commerce parking lot. You can park your car and walk over to the field. There is a road where you can turn left and turn around if you miss this quick turn into the parking lot. Just be careful. The day we went there was a lot of traffic on Medical Center Parkway.

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There were several people there with their kids, grandchildren and families taking pictures with their iPhones. There were photographers shooting engagement photos and summer sessions. But what really caught my eye were the birds, the bees and the butterflies buzzing and flitting around the beautiful sunflowers.

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As I took several steps into the sunflower field I forgot about everyone else around me and felt like I was walking into a field of dreams.
I followed several of the trails that wove in and around the thousands of sunflowers all around me and took in all the beauty.

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I felt like a kid being in this 6 foot tall maze that could have been intimidating had it not been for the view of the hotels and barns in the distance. By the way, most of the pictures I took were at eye level or me having to aim my camera up toward the sky.

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Looking up I saw blue skies. Looking around me I saw these graceful 5-6 foot flowers gently swaying in the breeze- almost in sync.
The song that came to mind was The Rascals “It’s a Beautiful Morning” with the words
“It’s a beautiful mornin’, Ahhh,
I think I’ll go outside a while,
And just smile.
Just take in some clean fresh air, boy!
Ain’t no sense in stayin’ inside
If the weather’s fine and you got the time.
It’s your chance to wake up and plan another brand new day.
Either way, It’s a beautiful mornin.”

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The gorgeous flowers were mesmerizing and I could have stayed there for awhile and just watch nature at its finest. I did eventually walk down to a sign that the Bateys had in the field I wanted to share with you.

8-13-15 Batey's Farm sign for sunflowers

Some of the flowers stretched above my head by a foot. A few were not quite as majestic, but they sure made me smile.

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Once I got home I did go to the Batey Farms website and facebook page and found out they are an 8th generation farm. They grow strawberries which you can pick in the spring, they have a hog farm where you can buy fresh meat, and they have just opened an event facility. If you would like to learn more about Batey Farms and what they have to offer, check out this link at
http://bateyfarms.com/

I thought I would share some interesting facts about sunflowers with you.

  • Do sunflowers really follow the sun?

When the plant is in the bud stage, it tends to track the movement of the sun across the horizon. Once the flower opens into the radiance of yellow petals, it faces east. No one knows why. However, it is likely a defensive response. Facing south or west could result in sun-scalding of seeds during very hot days.

  • What is the height of the tallest sunflower?

A sunflower grown in the Netherlands holds the record for being the tallest sunflower in the world. It measured 25 feet, 5.4 inches. (Source: 2004 Guinness World Records)

  • What size is the largest sunflower head on record?

That honor belongs to a 32 inch (82 cm) sunflower head that grew in British Columbia. (Source: 2004 Guinness World Records)

  • Why is Kansas the Sunflower State?

The sunflower plant is native to North America. The wild sunflower is so common in Kansas, it is actually a serious weed problem. These are the multiple headed plants.

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“If I were a flower.. I would be a sunflower.
To always follow the sun, turn my back to darkness,
Stand proud, tall and straight, even with my head full of seeds.”

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“I want to be like a sunflower so even on the darkest days I will stand tall and find the light.”

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I saw on The Batey’s facebook page where the sunflowers should last another week or two, so head out to Murfreesboro if you are in the middle Tennessee area and get lost in a field of sunflowers and create your own field of dreams!

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Until next time…

  • I hope you spend every day, living, learning, laughing and loving life…
    while focused on Nashville and the great state of Tennessee!
    My best to you,
    Terri

    *All photos in my blog, ‘Focused On Nashville’ are images I have taken. I hope you like them!

    Best,                                                                                                                                 Terri