Scattering Seeds of Sustainable Sunshine

Sunfox Farm in Concord brings the taste and beauty of sunflowers to central New Hampshire
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Photo by Jordan Cole

Summer is for sunflowers. Whether they’re lighting up the tablescape of your weekend barbecue or feeding you and your local pollinators, this daisy-like flower roots itself in joy wherever it grows. 

After witnessing rolling hills of its blooming glee in Italy, Greg Pollock decided New Hampshire needed its own sunflower show, too. 

“Even though the sunflowers were past their bloom, there was something about the spectacle that inspired me to bring it back home to Concord,” Pollock says. “This is our first year on our new 57-acre property on Loudon Road, 20 acres of which are dedicated just to sunflowers, and we couldn’t be more excited for the story to continue to bloom.”

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Greg Pollock’s mom, Sue, helps out by manning a table and selling flowers and oil. Photo by John W. Hession

With over 10 years of farming experience in the rearview, Pollock returned from his European travels, developed a plan, started Sunfox Farm in 2019 on 2 acres of land and brought his partner, Amber Brouillette, to the team in 2020 to help bring the farm’s vision to life. 

Their mission? To bring the beauty and flavor of sunflowers to New Hampshire through sustainable and environmentally responsible agricultural practices.

Our specialty is growing sunflowers for oilseed production and creating our own food products, but the heart behind our farm is deeper than that,” Pollock says. “We believe that by being good stewards of the Earth, we can produce nutritious and flavorful food that nourishes both the body and the soul.” 

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Four seven-course farm-to-table dinners are planned for Sunfox Farm’s 2023 Sunflower Bloom Festival. Photo by Jordan Cole

Sunflower oil, one of the farm’s biggest products, does just that. Unlike other store-bought oils, their sunflower oil is cold-pressed and unrefined — so that it retains its nutrients and flavor — not to mention organic, trans-fat-free and heart-healthy. “Our oil has a smoke point of 320 degrees Fahrenheit, which makes it versatile for all of your baking and cooking needs,” Pollock says. “It is perfect to sauté with or use as a grilling oil. My mom’s favorite way of using it is popping popcorn with it, and we’ve been playing around with using it in chocolate cake recipes, because it adds a unique nuttyness to the flavor.” 

Another way to soak up the charm and power of the sunflowers is to visit the farm during its fifth annual Sunflower Bloom Festival. Every day for over a week (August 12-20, 2023) from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., experience the natural magic at Sunfox Farm’s 20-acre field. Whether cutting your own flowers to bring home, enjoying local music or purveying the many food trucks, artisans and vendors, visitors have plenty to do in the midst of sunflower majesty. “This is one of our favorite times of the year at the farm, and being able to bring our community together in this way makes it extra special,” Brouillette says. “The sunflowers will be set up perfectly with the state capital in the background, so the photo opportunities will be as abundant as the flowers.”

The importance of building community, honoring the seasons and connecting with nature keeps the farm going. 

“Farming is more than just growing food for us,” Brouillette says. “At the end of the day, we do this because of our passion for our farm family and the environment. Being able to bring people together around these bright, blossoming flowers lights us up and gets us even more excited to see what our future holds.” 

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Greg Pollock and his partner (and professional chef) Amber Brouillette run Sunfox Farm in Concord. Photo by Kimberly H. Photo

Farm-to-table dining at Sunfox Farm

Take your sunflower experience to another level by enjoying a twilight dinner among the flowers. Amber Brouillette, Pollock’s partner and a professionally-trained chef with a background in nutrition, brings years of crafting farm-to-table dinners to this year’s varied menus. There will be four dinners offered during the festival, each including a seven-course meal with locally sourced, small-farm ingredients. This year’s menu offers pork and corn with corn croquette, corn puree, sunflower shoot and sunflower petal, herbed pasta with kale “marrow” and ricotta, sunflower hummus, herb oil, sauteed kale, pea shoots and sunflower powder. (Don’t forget to bring your own beer and wine.)

2023 dates: August 12, 13, 19, 20 and the multi-course dinner lasts from 5:45 p.m. to approximately 8:30 p.m.

Categories: People, Summer Roadtrips, Things to Do