In Lancaster County, maze replaces corn with hemp, an autumn tradition revisited
Corn mazes are a classic fall attraction, but Cedar Meadow Farm gave the tradition a unique twist this year by swapping corn for hemp.
Cedar Meadow Farm started growing hemp and producing CBD oil after the cultivation was legalized three years ago, says farm owner Steve Groff. This is the farm's first year offering a Hemp Maze, which incorporates information about hemp and Cedar Meadow Farm's farming practices during the delicate hike through the crop.
The 4 hectare labyrinth includes a shorter hemp section for young children and an area with taller plants - reaching up to 3m60 tall - for older children and adults. The labyrinth also features a very popular sandbox-like hemp seed box for children to play in.
The maze creates an image of Grizzly, the farm dog and Cedar Meadow mascot. Visitors can even meet Grizzly when they visit the attraction.
But the labyrinth is more than just entertainment. “It's not just entertainment, it's also educational because we have our educational training centers, we talk about all the things the hemp plant can be used for,” said Groff.
Hemp is a cannabis plant, but Groff says visitors won't get high while walking through the maze. The hemp that makes up the maze contains less than 0,1% THC, which is the main psychoactive compound in cannabis.
Legally, cannabis plants containing less than 0,3% THC are considered hemp, while cannabis plants containing more than 0,3% THC are considered marijuana, which is only legal. for medical purposes in Pennsylvania.
Hemp is used in many products, one of the best known being CBD oil. The plants used for the corn maze are not of the type used for CBD oil, as this variety is too short for a maze, Groff explained.
Instead, the hemp that makes up the Cedar Meadow maze primarily produces useful fibers and seeds. The seeds can be eaten by humans and other animals, while other parts of the plant can be used to make products such as textiles and biodegradable plastics.
Groff has declared that the seeds of these hemp plants would be ready for harvest around mid-September, but since the maze runs until October, the seeds will not be harvested. Fiber, on the other hand, will be, and Mr Groff said he would send it to a factory that turns lean plants into other items.
Since the labyrinth opened, hundreds of people have come to visit it, some driving for hours to discover this attraction. Mr Groff said he hoped to reach a total of 1 visitors this weekend. “People find it fascinating,” he said.
The Hemp Maze is open from 13 p.m. until dark on Saturdays until the end of October. At 17 p.m., the farm also offers a 'Pumpkin Chunkin' Buffalo Safari and Farm Tour ', which takes visitors on a tour of the farm to learn about its farming practices, and then to the bison pasture of Cedar Meadow, where visitors can feed the bison pumpkins.
“If you want to try something unique, different, we have it,” Groff said. "It's educational, it's informative, but it's also a lot of fun."