WATER has helped bring to life more than one million sunflowers planted for the annual Kalbar Sunflower Festival in the Scenic Rim.
This year, visitors to the festival will not only be able to take in the bright spectacle but also plant their own sunflower seed in a terracotta pot, thanks to the region’s water service provider, Urban Utilities.
The planting activity will be available for free at Urban Utilities’ stall at The Scenic Rim Flower Farm from Friday, March 10 to Sunday March 12, for the community to take home and grow, all with the help of water.
Urban Utilities spokesperson Emily Arnold said water was at the heart of our much-loved lifestyle in South East Queensland.
“You only have to take one look at the thousands of sunflowers planted here in Kalbar to know that where there’s water, there’s growth – of our regions, communities and agriculture,” she said.
“Although we’re no longer in drought, our drinking water supplies are under pressure from population growth and climate change and it’s important we secure them for the future.
“We’re looking forward to providing sunflower seeds for festival visitors to grow at home and talking to our community about how we’re planning well ahead to ensure water security for the region, so events like the Kalbar Sunflower Festival can continue for years to come.”
Festival founder and organiser Jenny Jenner said she understands better than most how precious water is.
“A few years ago, production on our lucerne farm had halved due to a lack of rain,” she said.
“Lake Moogerah, which irrigates the Fassifern Valley and the Warrill Valley, was at around 13 per cent capacity and dropping.
“That’s when my husband and I came up with the idea to grow sunflowers, because even though they need water, they are a drought-hardy crop.”
Ms Arnold said visitors to the festival would also have the chance to receive a sunflower-themed giveaway.
“Simply by signing up to Urban Utilities’ online community hub, WaterTalk, visitors to our stall will receive a canvas tote bag featuring a beautiful sunflower print designed by a local artist,” she said.
“The giveaway will be a bright reminder of their day out at the festival, and a reminder that water is at the heart of everything.”
Urban Utilities’ WaterTalk is an online forum where residents can learn more about the future of water security in our region.