June is prime time for you to berry yourself in fun; strawberry picking fun that is. Looking back, some of my fondest memories include my grandfather in his khaki shorts and calf-high white socks meandering through the lush u-pick fields of the Hudson Valley – picking the most amazing strawberries you have ever seen! Years later, not much has changed. There’s still nothing sweeter than spending a sun-drenched summer day picking berries that, in my opinion, taste better than anything you can find in a grocery store.
In upstate New York, the growing season for strawberries is a mere one month long, so you’ll want to want to make sure that you plan your family’s farming adventure sooner rather than later. Yet, before you head out, here are a few thing to keep in mind:
Dress Comfortably – Strawberry picking can get messy, so make sure to wear older clothing. Being comfortable and not having to worry about stains is important. The same goes for your footwear. Ideally, you should wear an older pair of tennis shoes or sneakers. Flip flops and sandals are not recommended.
Apply Sunscreen – Farms are not known for their shady fields, so unless you want to bring home a nasty sunburn with your strawberries, apply a liberal amount of sunscreen. Children are especially susceptible to sunburn, so adding a wide brimmed hat to your little one’s wardrobe for the day wouldn’t hurt. Plus, they’ll look adorable in every picture you take!
Stay Hydrated – It’s surprising just how thirsty you can get picking your own strawberries, so make sure to carry a bottle of water and familiarize yourself with the most obvious signs of dehydration: dry mouth, headache and dizziness. If you forget to bring water, pop a few of those delicious strawberries in your mouth. After all strawberries are 91% water.
Bring Disposable Wipes or Gardening Gloves – Again, strawberry picking can get messy. To avoid staining your hands, we suggest bringing either disposable wipes or gardening gloves.
Ok, so now that you’re prepared for your u-pick adventure, where do you go? Here are our top two picks (no pun intended) for the best strawberry farms in upstate New York.
Kelder’s Farm – Located in Kerhonkson, NY in Ulster County, Kelder’s Farm offers an impressive range of farm fresh activities in addition to strawberry picking; including miniature golf, a petting zoo, jumping pillow and farmers market. Local resorts, like Honor’s Haven Resort & Spa in nearby Ellenville, offer Farm Day Passes to this one-of-a-kind farm.
Cost for strawberry picking: By the pint or quart. For current pricing call 845-626-7137
Saunderskill Farms – Located in Accord, NY in Ulster County, Saunderskill Farms delights visitors from near and far with their strawberries, as well as their onsite bakery and market featuring a delicious assortment of pastries, breads, cookies, local syrup and honey.
Cost for strawberry picking: By the pound. For current pricing call 845-626-2676