Where in the San Francisco / San Mateo County area of California to find pick your own farms and orchards for fruit, vegetables, pumpkins and canning & freezing instructions!
This month's notes: May 2015: Spring IS here! Strawberries and blueberries each have a very brief season; don't miss them: See your state's crop availability calendar for more specific dates of upcoming crops. And see our guide to local fruit and vegetable festivals, such as strawberry festivals and blueberry festivals. Organic farms are identified in green! Also make your own ice cream - see How to make ice cream and ice cream making equipment and manuals.) 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!
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- To see the pick-your-own farms and orchards for this area, click here or scroll down the page
- Crop availability / harvest calendar
- Farm markets, roadside stands, local meat, milk, eggs, local honey, horse riding, farm B&B's etc.
- To find pumpkin patches, corn mazes and other Halloween activities, click here.
- To find choose and cut-your-own Christmas tree farms, click here.
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".
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!
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San Mateo County
Coastways Ranch Inc (aka Swanton Berry Farm) -
blackberries, olallieberries, strawberries, restrooms, picnic area,
640 Cabrillo Highway (Highway 1), Pescadero, CA 94060. Phone: 831-469-8804. Email: email@example.com. Open: The Organic Strawberry U-pick is open on weekends from 10am-5pm; but call to check availability before you come; This location is only open on weekends; Strawberries begin in April, Olallieberries begin in June; Blackberries come in season in July; The u - pick usually ends in late August; The ranch is open seven days a week; Kiwi u - pick begins in December and ends in January; The ranch is open for Kiwi u - pick Friday, Saturday, and Sunday from 10am to 4pm. Click here for current open hours, days and dates. Directions: Swanton Coastways Ranch is located 28 miles South of Half Moon Bay, CA and 20.5 miles North of Santa Cruz on Highway 1. It is about a quarter mile south of Ano Nuevo State Park and a quarter mile north of Waddell Beach. Click here for a map and directions. We are certified organic for all crops! Payment: Cash, Check, WIC Vouchers. There are many attractive areas for relaxing after gathering your fill of berries or kiwis, so bring a picnic and spend the day. We provide boxes and baskets and recommend wearing layers. The organic strawberries are $4.00/lb. (UPDATED: April 26, 2015, JBS) (UPDATED: May 23, 2014, from their website) (UPDATED: January 26, 2011)
Comments from a visitor on June 27, 2009: " Since I wrote to complain about one farm, I should follow up with some real praise for the Swanton Berry Farm operation. On Fathers Day, 2009, after we left Pescadero, we drove south down Highway 1 and visited Swanton's Coastways Ranch U-Pick strawberry fields overlooking the Pacific Ocean. We had researched this farm on their website, and if anything they had understated the beauty and quality of the place. A beautiful location (admittedly on a beautiful day) with friendly, helpful people at the field, and some beautiful fruit. My wife and I and our 7-year-old twins picked two flats in under 20 minutes, paying $2.50 per pound. We enjoyed some wonderful fresh fruit and made some beautiful strawberry jam the next day."
(UPDATED: June 27, 2009)
Phipps Ranch -
2700 Pescadero Road, Pescadero, CA. Phone: 650-879-0787. Open: A local Inn reports they have been purchased by another farm; so we do not know if they will be open for U-Pick in 2015. Strawberries: Light picking throughout May. Strawberries are ripe and ready for picking from mid May through the end of September, depending on the weather. Olallieberries (which are a type of blackberry) are ripe and ready for picking from the beginning of June through the end of July, depending on the weather. Olallieberries: Will be ready for picking around the 3rd week of June. Boysenberries: Will be ready for picking around the 2nd week in July. . The cost of berries is in addition to the entrance fee. See this page for hours and other information. (UPDATED: April 26, 2015, JBS) (UPDATED: May 23, 2014, from their website)
Comments from a visitor on June 26, 2009: "We stopped at this farm on Father's Day 2009, lured by their web site. We were VERY DISAPPOINTED. The place was unkempt, even filthy, and help was less-than-helpful. The worst thing was that their single porta-potty was full to overflowing right next to the store area -- absolutely disgusting. We left immediately."
Webb Ranch - Certified
Organic, blackberries, boysenberries, loganberries,
pumpkins, raspberries (red), raspberries (yellow), tomatoes,
porta-potties, restrooms, picnic area (bring your own food),
birthday parties, school tours, group reservations
2720 Alpine Road, Portola Valley, CA 94028. Phone: 650-854-6334. Email: Deano@webbranchinc.com. Open: Click here for current dates and hours. Directions: We are located off of Hwy 280 and Alpine rd east in Menlo Park. We are 15 mile south of San Francisco, and 15 miles north of San Jose, 300 feet right off of Hwy 280. Click here for a map and directions. We are certified organic for all crops! Payment: Cash, Visa/MasterCard, Discover, AmEx. Click here for our Facebook page. Webb Ranch is located in Portola Valley, just outside Palo Alto. Family Owned and Operated since 1922. All of our Farming is CCOF (california Certified Organic Farmer)the only thing we spray on our Crops is H2O!! :).Webb Ranch is following all water conservation rules for 2015. We are cutting back per guidelines, but this will not affect the berries. The weather is the biggest factor, and too much heat is the most harmful. The weather has been great and the berries are tasty, so come out to the Webb Ranch U-Pick. All berries are CCOF. Use our baskets (no personal containers allowed). Lawn area available, bring blanket & lunch. No reservations necessary. PETS AND SMOKING ARE PROHIBITED. ALWAYS SUBJECT TO WEATHER/HEAT. (UPDATED: May 23, 2014). Also see our choose and cut Christmas tree farm and U-Pick Pumpkins. (UPDATED: April 26, 2015, JBS) (UPDATED: May 23, 2014, from their website) (UPDATED: June 02, 2010) (UPDATED: May 21, 2008)
- None found here yet. Write me, if you know of any!
to suggest a farm
(If you are the farmer/owner/operator, use this form instead: "Add my farm or event")
Farmer's Markets, Farm Stands and Roadside Stands, Etc.
unless they are also listed above)
Local Honey Sources:
Meats, Milk and Eggs:
Horse Rides and More:
Farm Bed And Breakfasts
Farm Venues for Events, Activities, Parties and Meetings:
Resources For Farmers
[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]