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Farm Beautiful Contest

03/06/2013 @ 11:06am

In 1992, Successful Farming magazine ran the first Farm Beautiful contest to discover the most picturesque farms in the nation. We’re bringing back this contest with a prize that is anything but a throwback.

Three winners will be selected from contest entries to receive Exmark Lazer mowers. These heavy-duty machines are designed for power, performance, and operator comfort. Farm Beautiful prize winners will receive a Model LZX801KA606 Lazer mower worth about $12,000 each!

Do you think your farm is worthy? Here’s what it takes to be a Farm Beautiful winner.

Judging criteria

  1. Aesthetically pleasing farmstead appearance. Judges will evaluate the overall appearance of your farmstead. Be sure to show off any decorations, signs, or characteristics that make your farm unique.
  2. Strategic layout to accommodate farming activities while creating an appealing setting. For example, this could be a back entrance to your farmstead that lets you bring machinery in through a separate driveway.
  3. Well-maintained farmstead. Judges will be looking for well-kept farm buildings, including new or well-restored original barns, shops, grain systems, as well as fences, windmills, and other adornments located on your farmstead.
  4. Creative use of landscape in a farmstead setting. Petunias, roses, or sunflowers – show us your best flowers surrounding your rolling hills, winding down entryways, or bringing life to the side of an old barn. Don’t forget your bushes and trees. From blossoms in the spring to fall’s crisp leaves, your trees bring out the beauty of the seasons.

What you need to enter

  • Send up to 12 photographs.
  • Submit a written description (up to 500 words) of your farmstead, including the history, what was done to develop the landscape, and how the layout accommodates your farming activities.

Submitting a video tour (up to 5 minutes) of the farmstead is optional. Entrants can enter online or through the mail. Online, visit www.agriculture.com/farmbeautiful, complete the registration, and follow the instructions. For mail, send all information to:

Successful Farming Magazine
Farm Beautiful Contest
1716 Locust Street/LS265
Des Moines, IA 50309-3023

Please include your name, address, telephone number, and email address (optional). Note that items submitted will not be returned. Three winners will be chosen and announced online at www.agriculture.com on September 6, 2013. Winners may also be featured in an issue of Successful Farming magazine.


NO PURCHASE NECESSARY TO ENTER OR WIN. Subject to Official Rules at www.agriculture.com/farmbeautifulrules. The Successful Farming Farm Beautiful Contest begins at 12:00 a.m. CT on 4/1/13 and ends at 10:59 p.m. CT on 7/31/13. Enter online at www.agriculture.com/farmbeautiful or enter by mail to Successful Farming Magazine, Farm Beautiful Contest, 1716 Locust Street/LS265, Des Moines, IA 50309-3023. Online entries must be received by 10:59 p.m. CT on 7/31/13; mail entries must be postmarked on or before 7/31/13 and received by 8/7/13. Open to legal residents of the 50 United States, and the District of Columbia, who are farmers and own or rent the farmstead in the entry submitted, and their spouses or immediate family members 21 years or older. Limit one (1) entry per farmstead. Void where prohibited. Sponsor: Meredith Corporation.

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Beautiful farm contest 07/22/2013 @ 1:55pm Postlewait’s also known as GCP Farms is owned and operated by Gary and Carolyn Postlewait and their four children. The farm is located in the heart of the Willamette Valley, Canby, Oregon. Amongst a working farm of 80 acres containing hazelnut orchards, Pinot Noir grape vineyards, oats, grass for seed, and Hereford cattle lays a beautifully landscaped park and woods. To accommodate farming activities, areas have been landscaped to help enhance the natural beauty of the farm and what it has to offer. In Oregon, there are evasive plants that have become a problem on many farms and other properties. The Postlewait’s have removed most of these plants which include English ivy, tansy ragwort and wild blackberries. Now in their place, are native plants that are not only visually appealing but help combat erosion. To help disguise irrigation systems, flowers have been planted to hide pipe. Large rocks have been placed around hydrants, large perennial shrubs and trees have been planted around the well and pump, making all of these systems now an attraction. Gary handcrafted a wishing well and water fall which flows into a seasonal creek. This replaced a common pipe that fills his irrigation pond by pumping water from his well and acts as a visually appealing secondary watering system to the crops. At the entrance to the farm is a handcrafted sign created by Carolyn Postlewait. From this entrance and along all major roadways of the farm, Gary has put up fencing, using recycled hop poles from his brother in-law who is a neighboring farmer. Much of what is used at the Postlewait’s is local and handcrafted. It is an amazing thing when someone can look at their property and know that most of the blood, sweat and tears are theirs and it has paid off. Adding to the authentic rural sites at the Postlewait’s, is an early 1900’s livestock barn and a large machinery pole barn. These have been sided to match and landscaped around both. Next to the out buildings starts a piece of land that has been made into a park which, otherwise, would be an unproductive piece of the farm. This area now serves many purposes. The creek flows through the center of the park and empties into the pond. This adds beauty and again function. Accent lighting has been added that runs through the park; in the midst of oak trees, beside the creek, and along the bridges. In the park is a personal saloon and arbor, these have been constructed by the family. There is nothing better than getting off a tractor after a long day and enjoying a freshly poured beer from your very own saloon. Others have thought the farm is just as special. Family and community members have held weddings and events at the farm. The goal is to increase the visits and promote farm living through agri-tourism, with not only beautiful farm events, but with wines, hazelnuts, grass fed beef, and other sustainable agriculture practices.

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