Last week, as Owen and I were planning our visit to see the sunflower bloom, and I mentioned that it was near Homestead Farm in Poolesville, MD, he suggested we do some berry picking, too. I thought that was a great idea to make the most out of the 45-minute drive, not to mention fruit fresh off the farm is always a treat.
Homestead Farm is where we’ve done most of our PYO (pick your own) outings over the years. In fact, it was where we brought Owen for his very first pumpkin patch experience when he was a baby. (Though let’s be real… that probably was more for us than him at that time.) Since then, we have picked much more — strawberries, blueberries, blackberries, peaches, tomatoes, apples, and more pumpkins. We’ve been on our own and with school field trips.
It’s not just the PYO (and photo) ops that make Homestead a great outing. There are also farm animals to visit, and the kids always love seeing the pigs, chickens, and goats — even better when they catch them on one of the goat walks. They also offer hayrides out to the pumpkin fields during the fall, and you can purchase more fresh fruits and veggies in the market. A pretty pastoral setting is the backdrop for all of this. It makes for a nice few hours’ escape from the city.
Blackberries are in season now, and Owen and I filled a box of them (which our family then polished off within a couple of days). They should be available for a little while longer, and next up are apples, several varieties of them.
There is a $3 picking fee, but that’s deducted from the cost of fruit you pick to bring home. Bring along a picnic lunch, which you can eat in a pavilion next to a pretty patch of zinnias. And in the fall, save room for caramel apples and cider!
Homestead Farm is located at 15604 Sugarland Road, Poolesville, MD. Hours are 9am – 5pm daily when the farm is open. The PYO season begins in late spring with strawberries and lasts through fall for the pumpkin festival. I always recommend checking the website or calling ahead to be sure the pickings are good that day.