One of our favorite summer/fall activities is visiting local farms to pick our own fruits, veggies & flowers. Below are a few of the farms we’ve visited this year — we give each of these our highest marks.
- Liberty Mills Farm, Ruckersville VA. Home of the largest corn maze on the East Coast. We spent a fun three hours going through one of the mazes (there are three, of varying lengths and degrees of difficulty). Each maze has a puzzle component, so it’s great for both the mind and body. And it’s beautiful!
- Butler’s Orchard, Germantown MD. This is a great year-round farm, with everything from strawberries in the spring, to apples in the summer, to pumpkins in fall, and Christmas trees in winter. They’ve got a fantastic market, with a wonderful variety of home-grown and locally-grown products. I bought a bunch of Christmas gifts there this year.
- Homestead Farm, Poolesville MD. Another great year-round farm, with all-season produce, as well as a small animal petting area, and a lovely pond.
- Ticonderoga Farm, Chantilly, VA. We visit Ticonderoga regularly, not so much for picking (their pick-your-own is limited), but for the kid-friendly activities. They have a huge hill with slides built all around it, farm animal petting areas, tee-pees and forts, a hayride, and a giant jumping pillow. (Side note: I thought the jumping pillow would be like a bounce house — somewhat generic and lame — but it was one of the most fun things I have ever done! It is a huge air-filled “pillow” that protrudes from the ground, and when you start jumping, you literally can not help but laugh. You’ll mostly see kids up there, but honestly, the adults are missing out. As an adult, it’s rare to have the opportunity to jump and belly-laugh so abundantly, so I never miss the opportunity to get up there with my son!) I also love this farm because it is a great lesser-known alternative to some of the more popular farms, which tend to be overrun by school field trips.
For all the produce we can’t grow in our backyard (e.g., apples, peaches, blackberries, pumpkins — and Christmas trees!), we love to visit our local farms. We’re fortunate to live in an area with farms within a 30 minute drive, and it’s a great way to support small and local family-run farms.