CONSTANT rain has pushed sunflower planting back, but growers are still optimistic tourism will be in full bloom this summer.
Quirindi's Ian Carter was set to start planting his patch, but a downpour put his plans to a halt.
"It'll be too wet for a week so it will be another week until we get them planted," he said.
"That will be a shame because that puts the flowering back another week.
"It's a nuisance."
The peak flowering period for the Quirindi sunflower trail has been pushed back until the end of January.
But Mr Carter said this could work in favour of the town, with the blooms coinciding with the end of the Tamworth Country Music Festival and the official opening of the Quirindi Silo Art Project.
"That's going to be a big help," he said.
"The best way to give this place a boost is to get people to come and spend some dollars here.
"And you never know they might decide they want to live here and start up a business."
Mr Carter's sunflower field attracted more than 5500 people from across the state, earlier this year.
And to keep the crowds coming, the farmer will plant a sunflower maze to keep tourists amused among the flowers in January.
"We've realised that you've got to do something different," he said.
"You can't keep doing the same thing and expecting a different result."
In preparation for when the soil is dry enough to start planting, Mr Carter and fellow farmer Ian Saunders have built a bespoke planter specifically for sunflower season.
Mr Carter said the project was one the trio had been chipping away at for a year, after realising broadacre planters were too big.
"We needed a planter that could do the job and one that could easily be moved from farm to farm," he said.
Having a specific planter for sunflowers will also mean farmers are able to stay on top of their commercial crops and not have to move machinery around.
The small scale planter will be loaned out to farmers in the coming weeks to help sow the seeds for summer.
A sunflower gardening competition to get everyday green thumbs involved is already in full swing.
Member of the sunflower garden competition organising group Shaen Fraser, said getting businesses planting sunflowers in their shop windows and people sowing seeds in their front gardens, would attract tourists to the heart of Quirindi.
"It will help get people into town to have a coffee, have a meal and maybe even stay," she said.
"It's about showing off our beautiful community and the other tourist attractions we have in the Liverpool Plains."
Judging will include biggest sunflower; most sunflowers in bloom; best business display; people's choice; best overall display; and best scarecrow or bird deterrent.