Corn mazes are a traditional autumn attraction but Cedar Meadow Farm in Holtwood, Pennsylvania took a new approach this year by using hemp instead of corn.
According to the farm’s owner, Steve Groff, Cedar Meadow Farm began cultivating hemp and manufacturing CBD oil three years ago, once the crop was legalized.
Hemp is the New Corn Maze
2021 marks the first year that the farm is offering a hemp labyrinth, which combines educational opportunities about hemp and Cedar Meadow Farm’s agricultural techniques with a challenging trip through the crop.
The 4-acre maze is divided into shorter hemp plants for younger children and a section with larger plants up to 12 feet tall for children and adults. Additionally, the maze features a famous hemp seedbox, which is like a sandbox, where children can play.
The maze resembles Grizzly, the farm’s German shepherd-blue healer mix mascot. Visitors can meet Grizzly during their visit to the park.
But the maze is for more than just entertainment.
“This isn’t just entertainment,” Groff explained. “It’s also educational because we have our education stations, we say about all the things that the hemp plant can be used for,”
Although hemp is a cannabis plant, Groff stated that guests would not become intoxicated while traveling through the maze. The hemp used to construct the maze contains less than 0.1 percent THC, cannabis’s primary psychoactive ingredient.
Cannabis that has less than 0.3 percent THC are classified as hemp while plants with more than 0.3 percent THC are classified as marijuana, which is only permitted for medical use in Pennsylvania.
A wide variety of products contain hemp derivatives, the most well-known of which is CBD oil. However, the hemp maze plants are not the same as those used to make CBD oil, Groff noted, because they are not tall enough.
Hemp on the Farm
The hemp that forms the Cedar Meadow maze produces primarily valuable fibers and seeds. Humans and other animals may consume the grains, while other plant components are used to make textiles and biopolymers.
Groff stated that the hemp seeds are ready for harvesting by mid-September but they will not be collected due to the maze’s duration. The fiber will be harvested though, and Groff stated that he would transfer it to a facility that will transform the it into various products.
Many people have visited the maze since it opened, some traveling several hours to see it. Groff is hoping for more than 1,000 visitors over the weekend. “People find it fascinating,” he explained.
Until the end of October, the hemp labyrinth is open Saturdays from 1 p.m. to dusk.
At 5 p.m., the farm also provides a “Pumpkin Chunkin’ Buffalo Safari and Farm Tour.” The tour takes guests on a ride across the farm to hear about its agricultural techniques and then to Cedar Meadow’s buffalo pasture where they can feed pumpkins to the animals.
“If you’re interested in trying something unique, something different, we got it,” Groff explained. “It’s educational, it’s informative, but it’s a lot of fun, too.”