An Aberdeen rotary club has raised thousands for a local charity by selling sunflowers and hope to double their total by the time they are all sold.
The St Fittick Rotary Club has launched its “pick your own” sunflower project to raise funds for Aberdeen-based charity Charlie House.
The flowers have been planted at Saplinbrae near Castle Fraser in Sauchen, Inverurie and will be available until “the last sunflower is sold”.
Alastair Robertson, president of the St Fittick Rotary Club, said he was first inspired to grow sunflowers around 20 years ago.
He said: “I am the president of the St Fittick Rotary Club this year and I thought I’d do something a wee bit different to mark my presidency. There is a bit of a tale behind deciding to grow sunflowers.
“A friend of mine, a farmer near Oldmeldrum, had a visit from some farmers from Yorkshire about 20 years ago who told him he wouldn’t be able to grow sunflowers in this cold climate.
“So, to prove them wrong, he grew an acre of sunflowers and put an honesty box out on the fence. After a few weeks he couldn’t believe the amount of money that had come in.
“I thought I’d like to give it a go too and this is the result. They make quite a pretty sight.”
The St Fittick sunflowers are on sale every day between 10am and 5pm on a first come first serve basis. Customers are able to pick their own flowers with one stem costing £1 or 10 sunflowers for £5.
Everyone has been ‘very generous’
Since their first sale day on August 14, Mr Robertson and the rotary club have raised more than £3,500 for the charity.
He added: “Everyone has been very open-handed because they see the merits of Charlie House. They have been very generous indeed, even in these difficult times.”
Charlie House supports babies, children and young people across the north-east who have life-limiting conditions, and organises regular activities for their families.
The charity is currently raising funds for its Big Build Appeal which would involve the creation of an £8million specialist centre in Aberdeen.
Mr Roberston continued: “There are a number of similar centres throughout Scotland, but not yet in Aberdeen, and I feel passionately that there should be on here.
“I have considerable sympathy for the parents and children who suffer life-limiting illnesses, it’s a subject that always touches me. I felt it was a very worthy cause to try and raise money for.”
Anyone who is interested in buying some sunflowers and donating to the fundraiser is invited to visit.