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What is a Pick-Your-Own Strawberry Farm?

A man picks strawberries on a farm.
Many people think that the best part of self-pick strawberry farms is that they can eat the strawberries as they go along.
Freshly picked strawberries taste great in salads.
Strawberries.
Article Details
  • Written By: Tricia Ellis-Christensen
  • Edited By: O. Wallace
  • Last Modified Date: 14 July 2014
  • Copyright Protected:
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A strawberry farm where people can pick their own strawberries can make for a fun outing for the whole family. These farms may be well-established local or community farms that operate each year, or they can crop up as strawberry season peaks, usually between June and early August in Europe and the US. With the self-pick style, customers can certainly choose the ripest and most luscious looking strawberries, and when they’re done picking they pay for their fruit at a counter that either assesses price by weight or container.

Many people contend that the best part about a self-pick strawberry farm is that people can eat the strawberries as they go along. As tempting as strawberry smells are from these delicious fruits, if a person plans to eat some, they should bring some basic supplies with them. Most food safety organizations continue to ask people to wash fruit whether organically grown or grown with the use of pesticides.

For this reason, people can take some paper towels and a water bottle, soak each strawberry they plan to eat in a little water and then dry it with a paper towel. This will help remove pesticides, or it can wash off fertilizers like manure that are commonly used in organically grown strawberries. Still, many people disregard these washing instructions. They must do so at the hazard that they can get extra exposure to pesticides or pick up nasty bacteria present in soil.

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There are lots of people who visit a strawberry farm with self-pick options and wonder which strawberries are the best to choose. Avoid green strawberries and those that are squishy. Look for red, firm berries. Most strawberries won’t get ripe once they’re picked, so they should be at peak ripeness without having become overripe. On the other hand, a few squishy berries won’t matter if the strawberries are to be cooked in things like pies or preserves. Usually strawberries from a strawberry farm are best consumed or cooked within a day or two of picking.

Standing out in the hot sun picking berries at a strawberry farm can have its charms, but many people quickly get tired of this process. Be sure to wear sunscreen and protective clothing to avoid burns, and if tired of picking, a lot of strawberry farms have strawberries for sale at their sale counters. If the strawberry farm only offers self-pick options, customers may be able to call ahead and order a certain amount of strawberries in advance. This may come at an extra cost because the farm must employ someone to do the picking.

These farms may offer much more than strawberries. Many sell plenty of summer vegetables too, and some have fruit trees that they harvest for more variety. It really depends on each location. Well-established farms may have greater produce variety than do the farms that simply crop up for a few months each year.

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