“Tasty and ripe”: The readers’ favorite farms to pick yourself

“Tasty and ripe”: The readers’ favorite farms to pick yourself

Winning tip: Punnet Paradise, near Edinburgh

On a bike ride through Scotland last year, the alluring aroma of fragrant fields full of strawberries drifting up a hill made me stop pedaling and follow my nose. It was an excellent decision. The well-signposted Craigie’s Farm in South Queensferry, near Edinburgh, lured me to a range of fruits to fuel my bike ride. I stuffed myself with raspberries and cherries and later also picked up veggies for camp. There’s also a lovely farm shop and small cafe where I sat, sipped tea and considered which of my picks to eat first – almost reluctant to get back in the saddle.
Nigel Williams

Greenhouse Party, West Sussex

Oh, you must go to Spring Gardens Nursery in Pulborough, West Sussex! This gem of a place near the South Downs is small enough to enjoy with young children but big enough to offer a fantastic checklist of seasonal fruit, veg and flowers to pick (free entry, pay for that what you choose). The farm shop and cafe sell and serve delicious food and drink, and the recently opened, fairytale-lit Gooseberry House hosts sold-out supper clubs serving still and sparkling Sussex wines. It’s one of my favorite places.
Lucy McLaughlin

Vegetables out, North Yorkshire

pea plant

pea plant

Balloon Tree Farm in Gate Helmsley, east of York, is the best place I know for PYO. It has a huge variety of fruit and vegetables, acres of strawberries, blueberries and raspberries, currants, blackcurrants, gooseberries and peas. The highlight of autumn is the pumpkin picking with wheelbarrows and scarecrows. The farm grows many other produce which can be bought in the farm shop and has a fabulous cafe serving home made dishes and cakes to tempt you further.
Nicholas Booth

Sunflowers for Ukraine, Wiltshire

Set in the beautiful Wiltshire Downs, The Farm at Avebury sells its sunflowers with proceeds going to a combination of local schools, preschools and the Ukraine Crisis Appeal. The kids loved getting lost among the giant stalks and the parents rushed off to get the happiest shots for the family album. The next farm charity pick your own sunflower on the morning of August 6th.
Alice Hues

Play Gooseberry, Shropshire

Freshly picked gooseberries

Freshly picked gooseberries

Related: 10 delightful British garden fantasies to visit this summer

At the delightful, family-run Woore Fruit Farm in the hub of Shropshire, Staffordshire and Cheshire, you can pick fruit from gooseberries in spring to strawberries, loganberries, raspberries, blackcurrants and later pumpkins for Halloween. Chill out for a cup of coffee at the cafe, which also has local Snugburys ice cream. The shop sells delicious wildflowers picked on the farm, along with eggs from its free-range hens. Perfect for a summer day.
Matthew Hoeksma

Top harvest, north of London

Butt Plantation Parkside

Butt Plantation Parkside

Parkside Pick Your Own Farm near Enfield is great for picking delicious strawberries, blackberries and raspberries. There is also a good selection of vegetables: corn, zucchini and green beans. Book online for £4 per person and exchange the price for your harvested vegetables and fruit.
Lotifa Begum

Let ’em eat cake, Northamptonshire

Grange Farm Harpole is a family run business with a small cafe selling homemade cakes, ice cream, tea and coffee. It also has an excellent corn maze and some very friendly pigs. The fruits are tasty and juicy and the farm is in a beautiful location.
Libby billing

Dahlia Fantasy, Surrey

At Garsons Farm in Esher, the luscious and luscious strawberries and raspberries are favorites, but you can also pick sweetcorn, carrots, zucchini, beets, apples, cherries and plums. There are also flowers to pick yourself – sunflowers and dahlias galore. Tickets cost £4 to enter the farm, which is refunded with the price of your products. If all the picking tires you out, there’s a lovely cafe to rejuvenate and a fantastic garden center to browse.
Emma Burke

Readers’ Tips from Guardian Travel

Each week we ask our readers for recommendations from their travels. A selection of tips will be presented online and may appear in printed form. To enter the latest sweepstakes, visit the Reader’s Picks home page

Strawberries Forever, West Devon

Just off the Devon/Cornwall border, just off the A30, you will find Strawberry Fields, Lifton. There’s plenty to do here all year round to keep families entertained, from home-picked strawberries and sunflowers in summer to pumpkins in fall and then Christmas trees. It offers excellent afternoon tea, Cornish pasties and a great shop and restaurant. You can also challenge the family in the corn maze on the way to Cornwall. Luckily I live nearby.
Elaine Pluckrose

Take away cradles, near Liverpool

Claremont Farm on the Wirral, south of Birkenhead, is a special place, much more than a pick-your-own place. As well as raspberries, strawberries and pumpkins on Halloween, there’s a fun fair and bouncy castle to keep the little ones entertained while you weigh your loot. There are also pigs and sheep to meet. Every year there is a mini festival with music and food. There’s a lovely organic cafe, a seafood shack and a forest school that teaches bushcraft. There are film screenings on some evenings.
Rachel Maher

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