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Finding U-Pick Farms in Your Area: Just a Few Clicks Away

By Damian Fagan (D_FaganJuly 21, 2014
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Summertime and the picking is easy (apologies to George Gershwin). Berries, cukes, beans, you name it, but where to go? You might get a recommendation from a friend or pass a farm on a country drive, but why not make it easier to search?

Gardening picture

Finding a U-pick farm near you is just an internet click away. Here on Dave's Garden, you'll find "Go Gardening," a resource with a section for u-picks and apple orchards. Another resource is the website Pick Your Own, a clearinghouse of farms that offer u-pick or purchase opportunities during the growing season. Listed by state and county (or region) these websites provide information on the types of produce available and what activities a particular farm has to offer. Contact information is also listed for many of the farms; farmers can upload their information to the site, as well. A third option is Local Harvest, a nationImageal directory of farms, CSAs and other resources for finding locally grown food.

At pickyourown.org, organic farms are listed in green to help peruse through the listings. When available, links open up to an individual farm's website and list location, directions, produce available and other pertinent information such as events or festivals. Some will even tell you if they are dog friendly. In addition to the farm information, there are links to crop calendars and recipes for canning, freezing or preparing produce. But that page isn't limited to jams and jellies, but includes links to preparing soups, sauces, meats and vegetables for processing. This is a "can-do" type of site!

If you are wondering how much fruit to pick to make jams, there is a page that for that, also. Like picking 24 quarts of berries to make 12-18 quarts of jam or how a bushel of peaches is needed to make 18-24 quarts of jam. Scroll down to the bottom of this page and you'll see some hints on how to pick certain types of produce.

There is even a listing of fruit and vegetable festivals like the February Nut Festival in Chico, California or the Hatch Chile Festival located in Hatch, New Mexico in September. You can let your fruit and veggie festivarian side run wild at the Pennsylvania Sweet potato Festival in Stewartstown, PA or Huckfest, the Bingen, Washington's Huckleberry Festival. There are even international festivals listed for the globetrotting farmer in you.

Maybe you're just after Easter egg hunt information. There is "eggzactly" a link to this information to make the Easter Bunny's worn out thinking about all the places to go!

The link of recommended books provides a short list of the numerous books and periodicals out there for home production. You can even order canning supplies right from this page and get started on canning and preserving fruits and vegetables.

About the only thing this webpage doesn't do is pick the fruit for you.

No website is perfect and these are no exception. You may find outdated or broken links. Pickyourown.org has some tabs that link to corn mazes, pumpkin patches, local weather reports and a searchable county map that do not open - it needs some maintenance and updating to restore these links, but maybe the webmaster is a farmer and they're too busy pickin' fruit!

 


  About Damian Fagan  
Damian FaganDamian is contributing writer to Dave's Garden. He is a freelance writer, hiking guide, gardener and wreath-maker living in Central Oregon. He has published several books including Pacific Northwest Wildflowers and Canyon Country Wildflowers with Globe Pequot Press.

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Discussion about this article:
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Picking Figs jomoncon 0 7 Jul 21, 2014 5:03 AM
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