Taupiri Sunflower Farm springs from seeds of grief into heartwarming pick-me-up for public

Something surprisingly uplifting has sprung up in the Waikato and part of that surprise is that it has grown out of the seeds of grief.

The Taupiri Sunflower Farm has not only provided comfort for the couple who run it, but a guaranteed smile for the people who visit the property.

These sunflowers provide 100,000 reasons to brighten up the most challenging of times.

They're the first attempt at growing sunflowers for keen gardeners Deanne and Phil Crowder, during their off-season rearing calves and growing maize.

"I think everyone just needs a bit of happiness right now," Deanne says.

For a small admission charge people can pick their own flowers and bask in their healing glow. But behind their bright and colourful appearance are stories of sadness and loss.

"They don't know how much it means to me that they share these things because I know everyone's got their own personal pain that they hold on to," Deanne says.

Sunflowers adorned the casket of Deanne's sister who was killed in a car accident 20 years ago.

"A lot of people coming back telling stories about their loved ones that have passed, and the significance of the sunflower to them too," Phil says.

Deanne suffers from depression and says the farm is a definite mood-enhancer for her.

"If you can just keep a little bit of sunshine for yourself when you have those rainy days, I think that makes all the difference of just getting through it," she says.

The first seeds went down in October and the crop is expected to be in flower for 65 days. What started out as a gamble for the couple has proved fruitful because business is blooming.

"It's timed pretty well, Auckland's been let go and the flowers are flowering," Phil says.

Visitors to the Taupiri farm are also making the most of their photogenic properties, brightening up social media feeds.

"We travelled all the way from Auckland to see this farm, beautiful place," one person says.

"It's beautiful - I wanted a photo with a sunflower next to my face, and now look at the size of that one," another says.

"I don't think I've seen anyone with anxiety on the way out. It's just such a lift for everybody, we're pretty proud of that," Deanne says.

These fields of gold are a pit-stop pick-me-up for a road trip this summer.