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

This month's notes: April 2014: Spring is just around the corner.  Strawberries are here in Florida, Texas and California, next in late March and April for much of the South, then in May for most of the country and June in cooler northern areas. See how easy it is to make strawberry jam or strawberry-rhubarb jam!

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".


Southwest Minnesota 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!

Blue Earth County

  • Valley Veggies - No pesticides are used, flowers, herbs/spices, school tours
    52727 State highway 68, Lake Crystal, MN 56055. Phone: 507-947-3343. Alternate Phone: 952-693-8140. Email: amanda@valleyveggiesmn.com. Open: Monday to Saturday, from 10am to 6pm; Sunday from noon to 6pm;Closed in the winter. Click here for current open hours, days and dates. Directions: From Mankato: Approximately 6 miles west on MN State Highway 68 from the junction with US Highway 169. We are on the left, or south side of the road. From New Ulm: Approximately 20 miles east on State Highway 68 from the intersection of MN State Highway 15. We are on the right, or south side of the road. Click here for a map and directions. We do not use pesticides on the crops. Payment: Cash, Check. Click here for our Facebook page. (UPDATED: September 20, 2012) (UPDATED: June 15, 2011) (ADDED: July 07, 2010)

Brown County

Chippewa County

Cottonwood County

Faribault County

Jackson County

  • Red Apple Orchard - apples,
    2015 US Highway 71 N., Jackson, MN 56143. Phone: 866-800-8000. Alternate Phone: 507-840-0118. Open: Please call for current dates and hours open. Directions: Intersection of Interstate 90 and United States Highway 71 in Jackson, Minnesota. Orchard located behind the Econolodge Hotel. Click here for a map and directions. Payment: Cash, Check. Apple varieties are Connell Red, Haralson, Fireside, Sweet Sixteen. (ADDED: August 10, 2012)

Kandiyohi County

  • Brouwer Berries - Strawberries, raspberries. You have a choice of U-pick, prepicked or sometimes getting them from the farmers market., restrooms, farm animals, birthday parties
    12951-105th St. SW, , Raymond, MN 56282. Phone: (320) 967-4718 . Email: brberries@gmail.com. Open: seasonal, based on the berry harvest; Usually open Monday-Saturday from 7am till sold out.. Directions: See their website for directions. Payment: Cash, only..  (Suggested by a visitor, ADDED: August 08, 2013)
    A visitor writes on August 08, 2013: "We loved it as does everyone who lives in the area and takes their kids. Not sure about organic, but I would imagine so. Their daughters like to host birthday parties for young kids and will even supply the cake, etc and lead the games. They also have a bunch of small farm animals that the girls will take your kids around to see. Their is a lovely pond and perennial garden for taking pictures of your kids. They highly encourage bringing your kids to U-pick and get familiar with farm life."

Laq qui Parle County

Lincoln County

Lyon County

Martin County

  • Center Creek Orchard - apples, pumpkins, U-pick and already picked, snacks and refreshment stand, restrooms, picnic area, Bouncy castle or moon bounce, petting zoo, birthday parties, school tours
    663 254th Avenue, Fairmont, MN 56031. Phone: 507-773-4547. Email: centercreek@frontiernet.net. Open: Weekends September and October, Saturday and Sunday, noon to 6 pm. Directions: FROM FAIRMONT: South on Highway 15 4 miles, East on County Road 18 4 miles FROM I-90: Exit 107 East Chain/Granada, South on County Road 53 5 miles, West on County Road 18 1/2 mile. Click here for a map and directions. FALL FESTIVAL: weekends in September and October; Activities include pumpkin patch, storytelling, corn pile, scarecrow building, castle bouncer, giant maze, apple sling, barrel ride, hayride, petting farm, super slide and haunted forest; For sale in APPLE BARN: over a dozen varieties of Minnesota grown apples, jams, jellies, pie, apple crisp and apple cider; Pick-Your-Own apples October 19th to 31st. Payment: Cash, Visa/MasterCard. Click here for our Facebook page. Proud members of Minnesota Apples Growers and Minnesota Grown Associations. (UPDATED: July 05, 2010)

Murray County

Nobles County

Pipestone County

Redwood County

Renville County

  • Bird Island Berries - asparagus, raspberries (red), raspberries (yellow), strawberries, U-pick and already picked
    83105 425th Street, Bird Island, MN 55310. Phone: 701-367-1870. Alternate Phone: 701-367-8294. Email: evens76@aol.com. Open: Saturday and Sunday 9 am to 7 pm; June 1 to October 31. Directions: Our Small Berry Farm is located in between Hector, MN and Bird Island, MN on highway 212; if going West on highway 212 turn Right on 425th Street; if going East on highway 212 turn Left on 425th Street; 425th Street is a gravel road, go down gravel road approximately 3 miles, our Farm is on your Left, you will see the Raspberry Patch!. Click here for a map and directions. Payment: Cash, Check. Are you ready for Summer-Time Fun!! Our Farm Fresh Asparagus, Raspberries and Strawberries are now ready and waiting for you!! Come on over and pick as much as you want (we will also pick for you!) Please bring your own containers (or, we will provide containers for a very small fee). We charge by weight for Berries and by bundle for Asparagus. Share the Fun! We welcome You, Family, Friends to Enjoy the Summer by Picking your Own Farm Fresh Berries and Asparagus!! We accept cash and personal checks (personal checks from Minnesota only please). (UPDATED: February 24, 2014) (UPDATED: June 17, 2013) (ADDED: May 08, 2013)

Rock County

  • Hansen's Berry Farm - strawberries, U-pick and already picked, porta-potties
    898 60th Avenue, Beaver Creek, MN 56116. Phone: 507-673-0063. Alternate Phone: 507-220-3522. Email: hansenfarm@centurylink.net. Open: ing Day for the 2013 season is Wednesday, June 26th; We are open everyday, including holidays 7am to Noon through the season; The season should last 2 to 3 weeks; Please feel free to call ahead for availability and daily picking conditions,. Directions: I-90, Minnesota exit 5 at Beaver Creek. North 1/2 mile, farm is on the right. Click here for a map and directions. Payment: Cash, Check. Click here for our Facebook page. (UPDATED: June 23, 2013) (ADDED: February 07, 2011)

Swift County

Watonwan County

Yellow Medicine County


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

Cottonwood County

  • Jubilee Fruits and Vegetables - Farm stand / farm market on a farm, Wide variety of seasonal fruits and vegetables, all produce is sustainably grown, Preserves, jams, jellies, Crafts, artistic products, etc, asparagus, beans, beets, broccoli, carrots, cucumbers, eggplant, herbs/spices, melons, onions, peppers, raspberries (red), rhubarb, saskatoons, summer squash, winter squash, tomatoes, Other fruit or veg,
    1310 Mountain Lake Road, Mountain Lake, MN 56159. Phone: 507-360-3293. Email: jubilee@mtlake.org. Open: Wednesdays, 3 pm to 6 pm, May through November. Directions: Turn north on County Road 1 from highway 60 into Mountain Lake. Turn west on the second road: Mountain Lake Road. Turn south at the first house on the south side of the road, which is our driveway. Click here for a map and directions. Payment: Cash, only. Asian greens, lettuce, spinach, kale, potatoes, okra, garlic, bulb fennel, peas, radishes, Brussels sprouts, cauliflower and sweet potatoes. (ADDED: April 11, 2013)

Redwood County

  • Hacker's tree farm, greenhouse and nursery - pumpkins, winter squash, gift shop, snacks and refreshment stand, restrooms, farm animals, school tours, events at your location (call for info)
    45372 190th Street, Sleepy Eye, MN 56085. Phone: 507-794-2462. Alternate Phone: 507-227-1077. Fax: 507-794-5092. Email: hackerstreefarm@sleepyeyetel.net. Open: Monday to Friday open 9 am to 7 pm, Saturday 9 am to 5 pm, Sunday 1 to 5 pm. Directions: from Sleepy eye 7 miles west on Highway 14,3 miles north on county road 7,1 1/2 miles west on gravel. Click here for a map and directions. Spring bedding plants April 20th-July 30;Christmas tree season opens the day after Thanksgiving. Payment: Cash, Check, Debit cards, Visa/MasterCard, Discover. Tours and meeting room available-plant your own container in the spring and make your own wreath in the fall. Train rides to evergreen forest at Christmas time. (ADDED: May 30, 2010)

Renville County

  • Bird Island Berries - Uses natural growing practices, Roadside stand, Farm stand / farm market on a farm, all produce is sustainably grown, Uncovered outdoor market, asparagus, raspberries (red), raspberries (yellow),
    83105 425th Street, Bird Island, MN 55310. Phone: 701-367-1870. Alternate Phone: 701-367-8294. Email: cevenson@birdislandberries.vpweb.com. Open: Monday to Friday 9 am to 7 pm; Saturday and Sunday from 9 am to 5 pm June 1 to October 31. Click here for current open hours, days and dates. Directions: Between Hector, Minnesota and Olivia, Minnesota off of Highway 212 and 425th Street. Asparagus is open now! May 1 to October 31. We use natural practices, but are not yet certified Organic. Payment: Cash, Check. off street parking on the grounds of the farm permitted to allow for picking our berries and asparagus!. (ADDED: May 08, 2013)

Local Honey Sources:


Meats, Milk and Eggs:


Horse Rides and More:

Watonwan County

  • Perch Creek Farm - Horse-drawn sleigh rides (weather permitting),
    82195 430th St, Truman, MN 56088. Phone: 507-776-6801. Email: perchcreekfarm@hotmail.com. Open: See our website for current hours. Directions: 2 miles north of Truman on highway 15, 1/4 mile east on 490th street You will see the lights!. Payment: Cash, Check. Christmas lighted trail-warming room with hot chocolate and popcorn. We have bon-fire with marshmellows to roast. All for $5.00 per person We start at 5:30 each evening,starting December 21st thru the 31st. Visit the web site to get an idea of what it is like!For other dates or large groups please call Snow or no snow we GO!!. (ADDED: November 24, 2012)

Maple Syrup Farms and Sugarworks:


Farm Venues for Events, Activities, Parties and Meetings:


Wholesale Foods


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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 s simple kit with just the canner and rack, and a pressure canner, if your 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!