June means local strawberries followed by raspberries, blueberries and finally blackberries. Visiting a u-pick farm is a fun – and cost-effective – way to enjoy our luscious local berries during their super-short summer season.
Here are some things to keep in mind:
Since weather or heavy picking traffic may close fields for a day or more, always check if the fields will be open before you go! A few have updated information on their websites or on Facebook, but for many that means you have to call ahead.
Morning is an ideal time to pick. The weather’s cooler, and the fields haven’t yet been depleted of ripe fruit.
Most u-picks are cash or check only, so be prepared. Prices generally range from $1.25 to $2.50 per pound.
Some farms are certified organic, some follow organic practices without being certified, and others take a conventional approach. If you want to know what a farm’s growing practices are, just ask.
Kids are welcome, but most farms do not allow dogs.
You’ll be out in the sun, crouching and kneeling in the dirt or mud while handling stain-inducing fruit, so dress everyone accordingly. Pack hats, sunscreen, wet wipes, snacks and plenty of water. A change of clothes and shoes is a good idea, too.
There’s no need to bring your own containers; farms will have low cardboard boxes set inside special carriers ready for you to fill.
And maybe celebrate your summer bounty by making a Strawberry Chiffon Pie with Vanilla Crumb Crust from Kate Lebo's book "Pie School"!
Here’s our list of nearby farms that let you pick your own strawberries. For more farm ideas, check out the Tilth Alliance’s online Farm Guide.
Harvold Berry Farm, 32325 NE 55th Street, Carnation. 425-333-4185. Closed Sundays.
Remlinger Farms, 32610 NE 32nd St, Carnation. 425-333-4135.
Biringer Farm, 21412 59th Ave NE, Arlington. 425-259-0255.
Bolles Organic Berry Farm, 17930 Tualco Loop Road, Monroe. 360-805-1980.
Schuh Farms, 15565 WA-536, Mt. Vernon. 360-424-6982.
Duris Cucumber Farm, 6012 44th St E Puyallup, 253-922-7635.
Picha’s Berry Farm, 6502 52nd St E, Puyallup. 253-841-4443..
Spooner Farms, 9710 State Route 162 E Puyallup. 253-840-2059.