Grab your sunblock, water and a picnic and head to Burnside Farms this August for their annual Summer of Sunflowers. If you missed the sunflowers at the McKee-Beshers Wildlive Management Area in Maryland, you should definitely make plans to visit Burnside Farms.
Every year the farm hosts two festivals – Festival of Spring with lovely spring flowers and the Summer of Sunflowers. We had never been to Burnside Farms and are adding it to our list for an annual visit because it was so much fun. What our pollinator-loving family members (see my daughter’s beekeeping blog here) also loved is that they are a Pollinator Habitat and the area is protected from pesticides.
Be sure to plug 15441 Haymarket Drive, Haymarket, Virginia into your GPS (and look at the map before you go). From Northern Virginia it was a fairly easy 35-40 minute drive on a weekday morning. Once you arrive, you’ll park in a rocky/grassy lot. Head to the entrance where you’ll get some instructions on the fields and how to cut and then pay for your entry. Admission to Summer of Sunflowers is $6 per person (under 2 free). If you think you’ll be back, then go for the unlimited re-entry pass that’s just $10. You can come back anytime during this summer festival with that pass.
Once inside the grounds you can choose to cut sunflowers or simply roam the beautiful fields. If you want to take home some of the beautiful flowers, you’ll need to either bring your own “snips” (aka shears) or borrow some from the farm. In exchange, you’ll hand over your car keys or other identification at check-in to ensure you return those snips at the end of your visit. Grab a basket and off you go! Sunflowers are just $1.50 per stem and you can also cut several other flower types – Cosmos for .50 cents/stem and Gladiolus for $1/stem.
When we visited, the blooms were just starting and the sunflowers furthest from the check-in area were where we headed. It’s not that long of a walk, but note, there is no shade. Borrow one of their adorable sunflower umbrellas to stay cool (or bring your own). As the season progresses, more sections of blooming sunflowers will open and will get closer to the check-in area.
In addition to the beauty of the fields, admission includes access to their jump pad, bounce house, two story slide, cornhole and other games for the kids. There’s a shaded picnic area where we’d recommend relaxing after picking in the fields.
Once you’re finished cutting, head back to the tented area where there are tables to re-cut and arrange your flowers. Think about either bringing your own vase with water to put your flowers in for the drive home or purchasing one of their adorbable options. Under the tent is the check-out area where you’ll pay for whatever you cut plus any other items you purchase (honey sticks, a cool drink, vases, etc.).
Add the Summer of Sunflowers to your summer bucket list! Peak bloom is expected for mid to late August and picking should last through the first week of September. You can always check their website or Facebook page for the latest updates.
- We recommend wearing closed-toe shoes. The grounds are a field – therefore, it can be grassy, rocky, wet and muddy depending on when you go.
- Well behaved and leashed dogs are allowed during their summer season.
- Be sure to bring plenty of water and sunscreen.
- There are port-o-potties on site.
- Burnside Farms is open daily 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. weather permitting.
- If you are allergic to bees, please do note, they are all over. They don’t bother you, they’re just doing their job. But it is something to be aware of if you have an allergy.