Summer fruits are rolling in at farmers markets and roadside stands, and I couldn’t be more excited. Warmer weather pushed the season up a few weeks, so strawberries are nearing their end. But never fear — other berries are arriving in abundance.
Celebrate the Fourth of July with a fresh fruit and some time outdoors — York County has plenty of pick-your-own farms and orchards to choose from. Before you go, keep these tips in mind:
- Call ahead to be sure the fruit is available. Dates below are estimations, and fruits might arrive earlier. Also be aware of how long a picking season is.
- Determine whether a farm accepts credit or debit cards, or come armed with enough cash to cover your purchases.
- Pickers can often bring their own containers, but it’s best to double check.
- Load up on sunscreen (including tops of ears and your hairline), and check yourself afterward for ticks.
- Know what you’ll do with the bounty. There’s no use in picking 5 pounds of strawberries if half of them will spoil before they’re eaten.
Here are a few pick-your-own farms in York County. All area codes are 717.
Barefoot Farm, 6621 Bluebird Lane, Dover Township. 292-1390. Hours vary for raspberries and blackberries; call ahead. Red and black raspberries arrived mid-June; blackberries expected the end of July.
Blevins Fruit Farm, 16222 W. Liberty Road, Hopewell Township. 993-2885. Open 8 a.m. to 7 p.m. Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturdays. Sweet cherries arrived early June; sour cherries arrived mid-June.
Blueberry Hill, 557 Heffner Road, Lower Windsor Township. 417-3828. Open
8 a.m. to 1 p.m., Monday through Saturday. Blueberries expected early July, possibly a week or two earlier this year.
Brown’s Orchards & Farm Market, 8892 Susquehanna Trail South, Springfield Township. 428-2036. Open 7 a.m. to noon and 4 p.m. to dusk Monday to Friday, and 7 a.m. to noon Saturdays. Cherries arrived early June; blueberries arrived mid-June.
Forge Hill Orchards, 135 Blossom Drive, East Manchester Township. 266-1206. Open 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday through Friday, and 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturdays. Cherries arrived near the end of June.
Maple Lawn Farms, 2885 New Park Road, Fawn Township. 382-4878. Open
8 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Saturday and 1 to 6 p.m. Sundays. Cherries arrived mid-June; blueberries expected early July.
Paulus Orchards, 522 East Mount Airy Road, Monaghan Township, 432-2544. Open 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. Monday through Saturday. Blueberries expected early July, possibly as early as mid-June.
Raab’s Fruit Farm, 209 Fruitlyn Drive, York Township, 244-7157. Open 8 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday. Black and red raspberries arrived in June; sour cherries arrived near the end of June.
Raven’s Blueberry Farm, 137 Butter Road, Conewago Township, 266-1470. Open 7 a.m. to 7 p.m., seven days a week. Blueberries available through mid-August.
Shaw Orchards, 21901 Barrens Road South, Hopewell Township, 382-8879. Open 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturdays. Blueberries arrived early June; cherries arrived mid-June.
Swamp Fox Farms, 13541 Country Club Road, Shrewsbury Township, 235-8712. Open 8 a.m. to 7 p.m. seven days a week. Blueberries and raspberries arrived mid-June; blackberries expected early July. Fall crop of raspberries expected in October.
– source: pickyourown.org
Spinach Strawberry Salad
Recipe provided by Kenmar Farms
- Sesame seeds (about 1 tablespoon)
- Salt and pepper to taste
- 2 tablespoons sugar
- 1/4 cup salad oil
- 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
- 1 bunch spinach, cleaned and stemmed
- Minced garlic to taste
- 1 cup strawberries, sliced or chunked
- Dry mustard to taste
- 1 1/2 teaspoons fresh dill or 1/2 teaspoon dried dill
Toast sesame seeds in dry skillet or hot oven several minutes, tossing often; let cool. Combine sugar, vinegar, garlic, dry mustard, salt and pepper. Whisk in oil in thin stream. Toss with spinach, strawberries, dill and sesame seeds. Makes four servings.
Find listings for pick-your-own farms in Adams County and other areas of southcentral Pennsylvania at pickyourown.org. We chose to focus on berries, but plenty of farms in York County also offer pick-your-own peaches and apples, too, so don’t be afraid to explore!
Enter the York Daily Record/Sunday News and Smart magazine’s Seasonal Recipe Contest. Each month, we will challenge readers to submit a recipe using a seasonal fruit or veggie of our choice. Random winners will be chosen in fruit and vegetable categories and will receive $25 gift cards. For details, visit smartmagpa.com.