Enjoy your fruit as fresh as it gets with a trip to one of the many pick your own farms in Ireland and the UK – a great idea for a family day out with the added bonus of delicious treats to enjoy afterwards!
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There is so much to be gained from picking fresh fruits and vegetables, and many of us have happy childhood memories of doing just that from pick your own farms or local hedgerows. It is a wonderful way for children to get some fresh air whilst learning and having fun – and there’s a tasty treat at the end (or on the way round, in many cases).
Children quickly catch onto picking the biggest and ripest of fruits and dropping them into the basket. But the fun doesn’t stop there because children just love to help prepare the fruits and get involved with cooking when you get home. They are sure to be nagging you for a return visit!
And it’s not just strawberries up for grabs – everything from courgettes to cherries, wild flowers to herbs can be found at pick your own farms. Some farms have up to 40 pickings on offer! Here are a few we’ve cherry-picked:
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Pick Your Own Farms in Ireland
Lamberts Fruit Farm, Rathfarnham, Dublin 16
Every year, the rush to get to Lamberts Fruit Farm is huge as there are very few pick your own farms remaining in Ireland. Only open on certain days from end of June to early August, it is essential to check on their Facebook page to be sure of availability.
When open, there are strawberries, raspberries, tayberries, blackcurrants, redcurrants, and gooseberries up for grabs.
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The Apple Farm, Cahir, County Tipperary
Apples have grown in the area for hundreds of years, and since 1968 more and more orchards have been planted. As well as apples, the farm grows pears, plums, cherries, raspberries and strawberries – although only strawberries are available for picking, and only on occasional dates (check in advance).
There is a farm shop available year round, as well as a Camping and Caravan Park on the farm if you want to get back to nature.
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Pick Your Own Farms in England
Copas Farm, Cookam, Berkshire
Head to Copas Farm and enjoy the fresh air as you wander around acres of fresh produce and pick your own seasonal fruit and veg, including asparagus, strawberries, cherries, gooseberries, runner beans, french beans and peas.
There is a minimum charge of £3 per person (paid on entrance before you pick fruit and vegetables), however the charge is then refunded off the produce you pick. They also hold Fruit Festival Days on some Sundays during peak season. On these days you are able to eat the fruit in the fields. If you also decide to take some fruit home with you, then this will be weighed and charged at half price.
Open from May to September, there is also an on-site shop that stocks picked products as well as jams, eggs, sausages and bacon.
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Graveley Fruit Farm, Stevenage
Get lost in the Hertfordshire fields of Graveley Fruit Farm and enjoy strawberry picking during the summer, or venture on a search for the perfect pumpkin in October. This farm has been in the same family for four generations and the business has evolved to include a children’s adventure play area with a zip-wire and haystacks, tractor and trailer rides, and a cafe.
Expect ripe strawberries, raspberries, gooseberries, blackcurrants and redcurrants. The fruit is grown on a table-top system at waist height for easy picking, and in polytunnels to enable fruit to be picked whatever the weather. The farm offers pick-your-own or fruit can be purchased ready-picked in the café.
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Garsons of Esher, Esher, Surrey
In the beautiful Surrey countryside, Garsons has the UK’s largest pick your own farm, as well as a garden centre and farm shop. The farm first started 145 years ago when they grew fresh produce to sell at London’s Borough Market.
Open from June to October, the offering is pretty impressive with 28 crops and 76 varieties available. You’ll find all the favourites, like strawberries and raspberries, plus fresh vegetables such as runner beans, onions and peas, and even seasonal sunflowers. There is even a handy map to tell you what is ready for picking and what’s not. All crops are easily accessible, and there’s plenty of parking onsite too.
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Stanhill Farm, Wilmington
The family-run Stanhill Farm has a huge selection of PYO fruit on its 150-acre site, including strawberries, gooseberries, blackberries and blackcurrants from June to October.
There is free parking and no charge for PYO – you just pay for what you pick. There is also a maize maze open from July to September. The maze has a different theme each year, from dinosaurs to safaris to get lost in!
They don’t have a café, but they do sell a variety of ice creams, drinks and refreshments from their Pick Your Own hut. So head on over for a delicious day of family fun, and bring a picnic to enjoy.
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Hillfield Nursery and Farm Shop, Norwich
You’d be hard-pressed to find a pick your own farm with a larger range of apples – Hillfield Nursery and Farm Shop has over 200 and is known to have one of the biggest ranges of fruit in the whole of East Anglia.
Whether you prefer spending time under the trees in the orchards, or looking for strawberries amongst the soft fruit crops, there’s plenty of fun to be had. With 19 varieties of different fruit and vegetables that you can pick, including pears, rhubarb and quinces, their season starts in May and finishes in October. Hillfield also has a farm shop and hosts events such as a blossom walk through their orchards.
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Parkside Farm, Enfield
Located in Enfield, North London, Parkside Farm offers little ones the chance to pick their own fruit and veggies between June and October. Choose from strawberries, raspberries, blackcurrants, redcurrants and plenty of vegetables too.
Stroll around the farm with a little basket in hand and select your favourites to take home. You will only pay for what you collect. With a selection of “table-top” crops, including lots of berries, redcurrant and vegetables, you won’t even have to bend to get the best fresh fruit.
There’s also a dedicated picnic space, a shop where you can buy ice creams, meringues and Parkside honey.
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The Hop Shop, Castle Farm, Kent
The PYO at The Hop Shop looks like it has been designed for filling up your family Instagram – it’s stunning due to its beautiful surroundings on a lavender farm in Kent.
During the autumn (even though the lavender is out of season, it still smells amazing) you can visit the PYO orchard which has pears, corn on the cob and Kent Cob hazelnuts as well as a variety of apples.
The orchard itself is predominately planted with Norfolk Royal apple trees, although there is the odd row of Cox apples, and the odd Golden Delicious tree for cross pollination purposes. Be warned they only take cash, but at £1.50 per kg for apples it is very good value.
The farm shop is well stocked and well worth a visit in its own right. They also have a very old quince tree at the front full of ripe fruit. Picking ends around mid-October, but check before visiting as this is a popular site.
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Trevaskis Farm, Cornwall
Enjoy the full countryside experience at Trevaskis Farm in the great beautiful Cornish outdoors. Trevaskis Farm has enough to keep everyone busy with fruit picking, a shop, farm park and a cafe that has a great selection on offer on its kids menu.
As well as PYO cherries you’ll find pumpkins, peas, sweetcorn and raspberries amongst others – so plenty to please every taste in your family. You’ll also get the chance to teach your little ones about the crops thanks to the informative signposts around the farm.
Entrance is free, so you’ll pay only for what you put in your basket. Weather’s never a problem thanks to all-weather polytunnels and lots of trees to provide shelter from the coastal breeze.
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The Balloon Tree Farmshop and Cafe, York
With pick your own fruit, a children’s play area, animal corner and a cafe that boasts award-winning cakes, The Balloon Tree in Yorkshire is a great day out.
Following a well-organised PYO trail through the farm, you can select the best of whatever’s in season – from the first strawberries in May to the last pumpkin in October. As well as PYO strawberries, they also offer blueberries, plums and runner beans amongst others, and the children’s play area is next to the cafe garden so you can supervise your kids while enjoying a cup of tea.
With a kid-sized, fully-functional digger and tractor, plus a 2-storey Wendy house and a climbing frame, your tots will have plenty to keep them busy. Your day doesn’t end at PYO and playtime either. Right by the play area, you’ll find Animal Corner where you can get hands on with the adorable animals who live on the farm. Meet Petal and Flower, the resident pygmy goats, then buy a bag of special feed from the farm shop and give them some treats.
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Pick Your Own Farms in Scotland
Cairnie Fruit Farm, Fife
Cairnie Fruit Farm has pick your own cherries, but it also has loads more on offer with strawberries, raspberries, blackcurrants, gooseberries, pumpkins and even sunflowers. The farm also has table top strawberries for easy picking. But it doesn’t end at the fabulous fruit! There’s also a cafe, funyard and mega maze.
If you visit during the summer when the six-acre Mega Maize Maze is open, we definitely recommend giving it a try. Even if the maze isn’t open, you’ll have full access to the Funyard, an amazing playground for kids with trampolines, crazy swings, slides, fortress, tractors and much more! There’s an entry fee to pay, but this is a full family day out and you will be sure to have loads of fun.
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Charleton Fruit Farm, Montrose
Charleton Fruit Farm is a family-run business where you can pick your own fruit, grab a bite to eat in the cafe (converted from an old barn and stables), browse around the gift shop, and let the kids play in the large play zone. In fact, there are two play zones to choose from – a gated one for kids under 12, plus another for older kids (and adults!).
There is plenty of seating, including some that overlooks the play areas so you can relax while you watch the kids play. Even on a popular summer weekend, the farm is well managed with plenty of parking and space for the youngsters to run around.
Throughout the year there are a number of seasonal events to get involved with from Easter egg hunts and haunted pumpkins at Halloween to choosing your home grown Christmas tree in December. Pick Your Own starts in Spring and, depending on the season, you’ll find a huge range of berries available for family picking fun.
East Yonderton Farm, Renfrew
East Yonderton is a family-run Renfrewshire soft fruit farm near Inchinnan, just beside Glasgow Airport.
During the fruit season, the farm is open daily for picking your own fruit and fruit can also be ordered ready picked for collection on weekdays. The farm also grows vegetables and potatoes which are available most of the year.
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Border Berries, Kelso, Roxburghshire
Strawberries, gooseberries, raspberries, redcurrants, blackcurrants, tayberries, and peas are all available for picking at Border Berries. This family-run soft fruit farm has large and well-tended crops for you to choose from, with prices from £3.50 per kilo.
Picking is dependent on the weather and also the fruit availability on certain days. The Facebook page and website are updated regularly with details.
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Pick Your Own Farms in Wales
Hawarden Estate Farm Shop, Hawarden, Flintshire
Between June and October families are invited to come and pick their own. You’ll find rows of gooseberries, raspberries, redcurrants and blackcurrants. Later on, there are English apples, pears and plums, both for eating and cooking, and Hawarden Estate Pumpkins.
When you arrive, pick up a bio-degradable punnet at the Farm Shop, and then come back for weighing.
Aberbran Fawr Farm, Brecon, Powys
Aberbran Fawr is a campsite in the Brecon Beacons National Park that also grows PYO soft fruit which can be picked, subject to availability, from mid-June to early August.
As well as strawberries, you can stock up on a variety of fruit and veg including broad beans, peas, potatoes, raspberries and blackcurrants.
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Hooton’s Homegrown, Brynsiencyn, Anglesey
Hooton’s Homegrown has a variety of seasonal fruit on a ‘pay as you pick’ basis. Strawberries are the main attraction, but blackcurrants, rhubarb, peas and broad beans are also available.
While opening hours for PYO are 10am-4.30pm, it is important to check their social media for confirmation of availability.
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Have you visited any other pick your own farms that we should add to our list? Leave a comment below and let us know – we’d love to hear from you!