It’s time for one of fall’s best traditions: apple picking! The season is already underway at many area orchards, but with so many apple varieties that ripen at different times, the pickings often last through October, sometimes even into November. Here’s a selection of farms and orchards where you can pick your own. My disclaimer: I haven’t been to every one of these places, but they all come recommended through local sources. If you have feedback on any of them, feel free to add it to the comments section. And if you have any good apple-inspired recipes, by all means share that, too. Happy picking!
Where: Poolesville, MD
When: Open daily, 9am–5:30pm,
Seasonal scoop: The apple picking season started in late August and is expected to last through the end of October. Bring your own container for collecting your fruits or purchase one there. You can also visit farm animals, and their seasonal festival begins in a couple weeks.
Where: Woodbine, MD
When: Saturday & Sunday 9am-5pm, Tuesday-Friday 9am-6pm, closed Mondays in September, but open Mondays in October 9am-5pm.
Seasonal scoop: A few varieties are already ripe for picking. Empire apple picking will begin on September 17. And many more are harvested in October. See the list here to see when you can snag your favorites.
Where: Germantown, MD
When: Tuesday – Sunday 9:30am–5:30pm
Seasonal scoop: The orchard opens with Jonathan apples on September 13, and more varieties will come later. The picking season lasts through September. (And a heads-up: their Annual Pumpkin Festival runs every weekend in October.)
Rock Hill Orchard
Where: Mount Airy, MD
When: Mondays 12-5:30pm, Tuesday – Saturday 9am-5:30pm, Sunday 9am-4:30pm.
Seasonal scoop: The apple picking season just opened September 12. Gala and Empires are ready to pick.
Where: Markham, VA
When: Tuesday – Sunday, 9am-5pm, closed the Tuesday after Columbus Day
Seasonal scoop: Several varieties have already been picked, but McIntosh, Empire, Jonathan, Grimes Golden, Golden Delicious, Red Delicious are ready now. While you’re there, see their historic buildings, visit farm animals, and enjoy scenic views of the Blue Ridge Mountains.
Baugher’s Orchard & Farm
Where: Westminster, MD
When: Pick-your-own is 9am-5pm Friday-Sunday, but the farm is open daily 8am-6pm
Seasonal scoop: The apple picking season is open. You can also enjoy a petting zoo, playground, and wagon rides.
Where: Markham, VA
When: Open daily 8am–6pm
Seasonal scoop: A huge variety of apples grow in the orchard, which opened for picking in early September. Their Fall Festival weekends begin September 17–see what that includes here.
Where: Winchester, VA
When: Monday – Friday 9am-6pm, Saturday 9am-5pm, Sunday 12-5pm
Seasonal scoop: They currently have Empire and Golden Delicious apples, and more varieties will be ready to pick soon. Their Fall Farm Fun Festival is September 24-25, and their Apple Harvest Festival is October 8-9. Other days, family fun includes a playground, wagon rides, and a cow train.