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After cooking up a storm with last week's newsletter today we move on to the fruit course. From May/June, UK farms start throwing open their gates, inviting us to trample through their fields to hand-pick from the finest harvests in the land.

Produce is seasonal, the bounty and abundance of what is available and when will depend on recent temperatures, so check websites before setting off.

Find more tips here on the app.
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Garsons Esher

Surrey

Over 30 crops of more than 75 different varieties of fruit and veg ensures the picking season lasts from June until October. Strawberries and raspberries, courgettes, peas and flowers (dahlias, £8 for 10) can be picked among acres of land. "Kids can run, play and eat," says this parent.


Copas Farm

Berkshire & Buckinghamshire

"A beautiful day out," says this mum of 2. Opening soon with asparagus on the PYO menu, followed by strawberries, blackcurrants and cherries in June. Then peas, plums and corn in high summer. Friendly, family-owned site. We like their online recipes, including this blackberry vodka.


Church Farm Ardeley

Hertfordshire

Their website is beautiful although this parent says the campsite is "quite rustic and basic". It is a farm with woodland, so it can probably feel... muddy? The farm shop sells top notch, flavoursome produce and the kids can PYO eggs at this experience.


Crockford Bridge Farm

Surrey

Another lovely website, with a farm as good as it looks online. This one hosts occasional "incredible" child-focussed events, recommended by a mum of 2. The PYO is plentiful, the garden shop is HUGE. For all of these reasons, it can be busy. Just get there early!


Broomfield/Foxendale Farm

Kent

Late bloomers in the PYO charts, they open up shop after most other farms, see their calendar here. Lots of apples, though, tips this mum. You'll be making crumble for weeks. This site is an ideal breather on any drive through Kent.


Cammas Hall Fruit Farm

Essex

There's a lot going on here. A farm shop, children’s play area and tea barn. Soon ripe for the plucking will be strawberries, gooseberries and raspberries. While you wait, it could be a good idea to pay a visit this half term for all the kids' activities – here. "So much to do it's worth making a day of it," says one mum.


Stanhill Farm

Kent

Forget the fruit, in July, their impressive maize will reopen. This year's theme is Crops & Robbers – a scarecrows and crows game. Check out their previous ones here. It sounds super fun and is worth the visit alone. Oh and there will be a Mini Maize, too, for tiny tots to enjoy. See their website for comprehensive FAQs.


Secretts

Surrey

Recommended by a dad of 2 "a lovely PYO site with lakes and delicious produce in the shop." A professional operation, as slick as they come, with many strings to its bow, boasting a hundred of different types of cheese for sale alone. PYO will herald in asparagus season, followed by strawberries that can be picked at height-level.


Gravely Fruit Farm

Hertfordshire

A children’s adventure playground, tractor and trailer rides, pet pigs for feeding, car boot sales and a café. Fruit is grown in polytunnels using the ‘table top’ system (fruit is off the ground away from weeds and slugs!). PYO strawberries, raspberries and blackcurrants. Pass the cream and see you next week!


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