Where in Orange County, California to find pick your own farms and orchards for fruit, vegetables, pumpkins and canning & freezing instructions!

This month's notes: November 2014: Apples are in full swing!  Raspberries tomatoes, corn and most vegetables are being picked in most places, most blueberries and peaches are finished. Find a corn maze, hayride or pumpkin patch here. Make your own homemade ice cream including low fat, low sugar and other flavors))  Have fun, eat healthier and better tasting, and save money by picking your own locally grown fruit and vegetables, and then using our easy canning and freezing directions!

Organic farms are identified in green!  See our guide to local fruit and vegetable festivals!. Please tell the farms you found them here - and ask them to update their information!!

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I'm always looking for suggestions of more farms and events to add and feedback about any you have visited, so if you encounter any, just click on the preceding link, as appropriate!  And if you have a farm and want to add it or correct the information, please click on the link to "add my farm".


Orange County, California U-Pick Farms and Orchards, sorted by county

Remember: ALWAYS call (or follow the link to the farm's own website, if the name is a blue link) to confirm the information before you go! They may close, run out or change events, times, etc. without notifying me!

Current Weather - Click on a map for forecast, or enter a zip code for a different location.
Julian - Ramona near San Diego Bakersfield

Orange County

  • South Coast Farms - ORGANIC, strawberries - usually just 1 day a year
    32701 Alipaz Street, San Juan Capistrano, CA 92675. Phone: 949-661-9381. Open: See their website for for hours and availability. Primarily, this is a farmstand and CSA. Call to ask them about the 1-day PYO. Directions: See their website for directions. Payment: Cash, only.  (UPDATED: May 25, 2014, from their website) (Suggested by a visitor, ADDED: July 02, 2010)
    Comments from a visitor on July 16, 2011: "The ONLY pyo crops offered are: Strawberries, and only at the end of the season, for one day. This year (2011), it was Sunday, July 11th. They also have a pumpkin patch, fresh apple cider and crafts for Hallowe'en. "
    Comments from a visitor on July 02, 2010: "Apparently they grow everything organic. They also have a CSA program. I have only been there once, but I am going back to pick strawberries this weekend! $1.25 a pound for organic strawberries! That's a great deal in this neck o'the woods!"
  • Tanaka Farms - pumpkins, strawberries
    5380 3/4 University Drive, Irvine, California 92612. Phone: 949-653-2100. Fax: 949-653-9050. Email: Tanaka Farms - Strawberries, pumpkins and other vegetables and fruits. Corn maze. Guided wagon ride around the farm
    5380 3/4 University Drive, Irvine, CA, 92612. Phone: 949-653-2100 or 949-653-9050. Email: TanakaFarms@aol.com. Directions: 2 miles north of I-5 and I-405 interchange, take I-405 to University Dr - South to Strawberry Farms Rd on corner. Click here for a map to our farm. and another map is here. Bring the family out for an exciting adventure which includes:  A guided Wagon Ride around the farm, Learn how different fruits & vegetables grow, Taste different fruits and vegetables, Pick and eat your very own Strawberries. For group reservations (ten or more) or weekday tour times, call : (949) 653-2100 Ext. 204. No reservations needed on the weekends for groups of less than ten. 2014 prices: Adults $17.00, Children $17.00, Children (age 2 yrs old and under) Free. Group rates are available call for details. We also have CSA fundraiser available. (UPDATED: May 25, 2014, from their website) (UPDATED: July 06, 2008)
    Comments from a visitor on April 15, 2011: "Further clarification on the "U-Pic" part of the farm. For $15, you get to ride on the tractor, get a tour of the many fruits and vegetables on the farm, and a ONE POUND basket for you to fill up with strawberries."
    Comments from a visitor on March 27, 2011: "Tanaka Farms has a CSA program through Farm2Table Connect. There is no membership fee, you only pay for the box of fruits/vegetables. The large box is $30 and the small is $20. They will also donate a portion from each box to participating schools. Visit this website for more info. "
    Comments from a visitor on August 8, 2008: "I took my husband & son to Tanaka Farms for their "Pick-your-own- strawberries" we went on a guided wagon tour that included several stops to taste fresh picked produce from their farm, we then had 15 minutes to pick and eat as many strawberries as we could.  Our 1 1/2 year old son LOVED it. Sure they were the most expensive basket of strawberries ($13 per basket) my husband or I had ever purchased, but those pictures were priceless !!  They also offer a Watermelon tour which we intend to go do as well."

Farmer's Markets, Farm Stands and Roadside Stands, Etc.
(NOT pick-your-own, unless they are also listed above)

Orange County

  • Village at Orange / Sprouts Farmer's Market- Wide variety of seasonal fruits and vegetables
    1500 E Village Way #2279, Orange, CA 92865. Phone: (714) 464-1060. Open: Thursdays, 9 am to 1 pm (rain or shine). Directions: between Katella & Lincoln on Tustin Street; Call for directions. Payment: Cash, only..More Information. Affiliated with Orange County Farm Bureau Sponsored Certified Farmers' Markets. California certified farmers' markets are the real thing - places where genuine farmers sell fruits, nuts and vegetables directly to the public. Every farmer who sells at a certified market is inspected by the county agricultural commissioner to make sure he/she actually grows the commodity being sold.
     (Suggested by a visitor, ADDED: March 27, 2011)
    Comments from a visitor on March 27, 2011: "Have not been to this Farmer's Market, but I work nearby and always see it in the East parking of what used to be the "Orange Mall" which is now called the "Village of Orange" or something like that. Don't know payment options, just know the day of week and hours."

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Picking Tips

[General picking tips and a guide to each fruit and vegetable] [How much do I need to pick? (Yields - how much raw makes how much cooked or frozen)] [Selecting the right varieties to pick] [All about apple varieties - which to pick and why!]  [Picking tips for Vegetables] [ Strawberry picking tips] [ Blueberries picking tips]

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Illustrated Canning, Freezing, Jam Instructions and Recipes

All About Home Canning, Freezing and Making Jams, Pickles, Sauces, etc. ] [FAQs - Answers to common questions and problems] [Recommended books about home canning, jam making, drying and preserving!] [Free canning publications to download and print]

Home Canning Kits

Features:

Ball Enamel Waterbath Canner, Including Chrome-Plated Rack and 4-Piece Utensil Set

* All the tools you need for hot waterbath canning - in one comprehensive set!
* Complete with 21 1/2 qt. enameled waterbath canner
* Also includes canning rack, funnel, jar lifter, jar wrencher, bubble freer, tongs and lid lifter.
* A Kitchen Krafts exclusive collection.

This is the same type of standard canner that my grandmother used to make everything from applesauce to jams and jellies to tomato and spaghetti sauce. This complete kit includes everything you need and lasts for years: the canner, jar rack, jar grabber tongs, lid lifting wand, a plastic funnel, labels, bubble freer. It's much cheaper than buying the items separately. You'll never need anything else except jars & lids (and the jars are reusable)! There is also a simple kit with just the canner and rack, and a pressure canner, if you want to do vegetables (other than tomatoes). To see more canners, of different styles, makes and prices, click here!
Don't forget the Ball Blue Book!

Lids, Rings, Jars, mixes, pectin, etc.

Need lids, rings and replacement jars?  Or pectin to make jam, spaghetti sauce or salsa mix or pickle mixes?  Get them all here, and usually at lower prices than your local store!

Get them all here at the best prices on the internet!