The kids have been home for weeks. They’re bored, and you’re frazzled. Playgrounds, camps, play dates, public pools, and many other kid-friendly activities are temporarily off-limits. Need a novel way to spend a summer afternoon? Need a fresh supply of yummy ingredients for all that stress-baking? Check out your local berry farm!
Berry-picking is a fun way to get the whole family out of the house, and spending a few hours in the sun boosts our immune-systems with vitamin D. Fresh-picked berries make a low-calorie, high-fiber snack, rich in antioxidants and vitamins.
NOTE: Check Before You Go
Call or message before heading to the farm, because conditions may change rapidly. All of these farms expect to be open for u-pick with extra precautions. They may not allow too many people in the field at the same time, or they may simply be picked clean for the next few days.
Sta-n-Step Blueberry Farm
Sta-n-Step has been in operation since 1989. The farm is named after the farmers’ daughters, Stacey and Stephanie. Their u-pick options include blueberries, raspberries, and thornless blackberries. Blueberries and raspberries ripen in early June. Blackberries come a couple of weeks later.
Purchase honey made by farm bees, and bring your own picnic to enjoy. The u-pick season generally lasts through late July or early August, and the farm is open Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Saturdays from 7 a.m. – noon.
Taylor’s Orchard’s u-pick thornless blackberries usually ripen in late June and last through most of August. You can also pick your own peaches, starting in July. Hours are Monday – Saturday, 8 a.m. – 6 p.m.
Knoxville Blueberry Farm
U-pick blueberries and blackberries are expected at Knoxville Berry Farm by the first of June. Need some local veggies to go with your berries? Purchase them at the farm stand.
Mountain Home Berry Farm
Mountain Home, AR
Looking for pesticide-free, u-pick berries? Mountain Home Berry Farm will have these in spades from mid-May to September. Raspberry season starts in May and ends in June. Blueberries are ready in early June, and blackberries are ripe from mid-June to mid-July. Elderberries are available in August and September. An on-site barn sells jams, crafts, produce, and eggs.
Renee’s Berry Garden
Renee’s Berry Garden offers chemical and pesticide-free u-pick blueberries and blackberries from late May through early July. Their hours are 7 a.m. – 7 p.m., and they’re closed Thursdays and Sundays. The sandbox will be closed all season, due to coronavirus concerns.
Neal Family Farm
Neal Family Farm will have u-pick blueberries in early June and u-pick blackberries by mid-June.
What Should You Make With All Those Berries?
Try a vintage recipe for “Arkansas Blackberry Cobbler” or blackberry buttermilk cake. Blackberry crisp is great if you prefer some crunch. The University of Arkansas Extension has tips on choosing, storing, and canning blackberries and blueberries, in addition to tried-and-true recipes.
Taste Arkansas has a delicious, whole-wheat, blueberry scone recipe. This blueberry torte recipe comes from a cook in Jonesboro. Arkansas Living’s frozen blueberry lemonade pie is a safe bet when it’s oppressively hot outside. The Arkansas-Democrat Gazette offers these seven blueberry recipes, including a few non-bake options.
Driving To The Berry Farm?
Most of these berry farms are in northwest Arkansas, which means central Arkansans may need to drive an hour or more. Do you have enough auto insurance to protect your property and your family from uninsured motorists, or to protect your assets in the case of an at-fault accident?
One of our agents would be happy to go over your policy with you. Get in touch today.