How to Use - the Quick Start Guide
Where you can find a pick-your-own farm near you!
How to Use
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This month's notes: December 2023: Blueberries are finishing in the Southern areas, still going in cooler areas, don't miss them! In most areas, peaches are going strong, as are figs. And apples have started. Sepetmber is the big month for apples! See each state's crop availability calendar for more specific dates. Organic farms are identified in green!  See our guide to local fruit and vegetable festivals!. See easy canning and freezing instructions/recipes, canning equipment guide! Also make your own ice cream; see How to make ice cream and ice cream making equipment and manuals
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I've tried to make the site intuitive and easy to use, but what is simple to one person, is complicated to another, so let me explain how it works!

The drawing at right shows a layout of the major areas of the website, which are matched by the buttons at the top of every page.

When you click on the buttons, it calls up a different page.  The top part may LOOK similar, but if you scroll down the page (using your mouse, the down arrow key or the "page down" key, you will see it is completely different!

If you use your mouse to click on areas on the drawing at right, it will take you to additional help about those pages.

How to find a farm near you

Most people will want to start by finding the farms closest to them.  If you need help in this, just click here for detailed help about how to find a farm near you!

If a page appears to be blank

It isn't really blank.  Just scroll down the page, and you will see the information. To scroll down the page, Repeatedly press the PgDn key on your keyboard, or turn the scroll wheel on your mouse, or click on the scrollbar on the right side of the screen.

This is happening because of your screen resolution: It sounds like you are using a tiny monitor (like an ipad or a 14" monitor) or have inadvertently set your resolution too low. If you change the screen resolution to anything larger than 1100 by 700 it will work fine. For example: 1280 by 720 works great, As does 1900 by 1080.  I'm working on a change to automatically correct for this, but that won't be done until late August 2012.

Here's how to change your screen resolution:

In Windows:

1. Open Display Settings by clicking the Start button , clicking Control Panel, clicking Appearance and Personalization, clicking Personalization, and then clicking Display Settings.
2. Under Resolution, move the slider to the resolution you want, and then click Apply.
For Apple computers:

You can change the resolution of your monitor to zoom in for detail work or to zoom out and see a whole page or more at a time. To change your screen resolution, follow these steps:

1. Select the Monitors control panel from the Apple menu, it may also be called Monitors and Sound.

Note: If you have more that one monitor, a separate Monitors control panel will appear on each display.
2. Click on the resolution you desire in the Resolution section of the control panel.
3. The new resolution will be displayed after you select it.
4. Close the Monitors control panel by clicking the close box in the upper-left corner.
5. If the image is distorted, adjust the video controls in the Monitors control panel or on the monitor itself.

Other tips

Note: some links open new pages - usually, these are links to outside pages, like the farm's websites, Mapquest, and a few pages that you just need for feedback and other forms or instructions! On those pages, the "back" key won't be clickable, so you just close the window to return to the previous page.

If you're ready to get started, just click on the drawing or the button at the top of this page for the activity you want!

If you need more help and don't have a computer-savvy 10-year old nearby, just write me an email from the feedback form! I'm always open to suggestions, corrections, updates, requests or cries for help!  And I am usually able to respond within 24hrs!


Remember to ALWAYS call the farm or orchard BEFORE you go - weather, heavy picking and business conditions can always affect their hours and crops!

This page was updated on

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

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!