One of Forsyth County’s most picturesque landmarks will have a new neighbor soon.
The family behind The Anderson’s Sunflower Farm, which has become renowned throughout the state as a photo destination on Shiloh Road, has sold 30 of its 40 acres to Sterling Estates, a retirement community developer based out of Cobb County.
Sterling Estates currently has two locations in Marietta, and their third would be the Sterling Estates of Forsyth campus with one- and two-bedroom cottages and apartment suites along with assisted living and memory care services, dining options, a clubhouse, parks and walking trails, and a 7,500-square-foot wellness center with an indoor, heated, salt-water, aerobic pool.
But the new development won’t impact The Anderson’s Sunflower Farm next year.
“Looks like there will be a 2019 season,” said Dennis Anderson.
Anderson said his father bought the property in 1968 and turned it into a working farm with cows, chickens, hogs and the like. In the early ‘90s, Anderson’s father stopped the farm’s hog operation, and so he stopped growing the corn and wheat used to feed the animals.
Rather than let those fields be overgrown by weeds, Anderson’s father decided to plant sunflowers. Within a year, the sunflowers were a hit in Forsyth County. With the power of social media, the fields’ popularity soared, turning the family farm into a destination for families and photographers across Georgia. Country Living magazine recently named the farm one of the 25 prettiest sunflower fields in the country.
That won’t change next year, though Anderson said he could see a day when the family sells the remaining 10 acres with the sunflower fields. The property touches Hwy. 9 and Shiloh Road, a prime location to be zoned for commercial use in the future, Anderson said.
“We probably will sell one day,” Anderson said. “But who knows.”For now, he said, the family plans to get the sunflower fields ready for the 2019 season, albeit with some new neighbors.