Amazing plan for sorghum farm

LOST children should be of no concern to parents at Tasmania's first crop maze.

Rowan and Anna Clark, of Rupertswood Farm at Whitemore, have decided to delve into agricultural tourism by cutting a maze into their latest five hectare plantation of sorghum.

The couple have hired UK crop maze designer Mazescape to develop a special intricate pattern, which will be cut into the crop using GPS technology.

If all goes to plan, the maze will be visible from the Bass Highway, and opened to the public in February.

Mrs Clark said crop mazes were big money earners in the UK and US.

"Rowan started researching them and we thought `we've just put a crop in - let's try this and get it to work'," Mrs Clark said.

"So we are trying it out as an agri-tourism opportunity.

"We are ideally located to tap into the tourism market, and it is a really good idea to value- add to an existing crop because we are going to grow it anyway and can dramatically increase our return with minimal risk.

"It is like a `pop-up style' trial. It will be here today and gone tomorrow.

"People will see it driving along the highway, will be interested to know what it is, and would not have seen it before in Tassie."

Mr Clark said it would be great to do something different on their traditional, third- generation, cropping and lamb production farm.

It is believed the first crop mazes were developed in 1993 by Disney World producer Don Frantz who designed a giant maze in a corn field to raise funds for flood victims in the US.

Mazescape maze designer Angus Mewse said previous maze designs had included a polar bear, a bee, dinosaurs, a helicopter and even the singer Tom Jones.

"To create a challenging network of paths that will keep visitors confused and having fun for just long enough before they find their way out, is a skill acquired through study and experience and is a true art form," Mr Mewse said.

"Crop mazes give families the opportunity to enjoy healthy exercise and a mental challenge in the countryside, on a real farm but while feeling safe within a managed environment," he said.

"The addition of other fun activities, refreshments and hot and cold food, can make the maze experience a day out rather than just a quick visit."

Email: ibird@examiner.com.au Twitter: @isabelbird

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