[Note: This is an updated article originally posted July 2013 on Family Fun Twin Cities. The author has now started a small backyard vegetable garden!]
When you’ve got parents who don’t garden, how’s a kid supposed to satisfy that itch to hunt and gather? The solution in our family is to visit a variety of pick-your-own farms and orchards throughout the growing season and let the kids harvest to their little hearts’ content. We love to scout berries in the summer months, fresh veggies as summer wanes, and we cram as many apple orchard trips into the fall as our schedule allows. It may cost a little more than purchasing at our local grocery store, but we believe the experience is worth it. Our method for finding these farm gems is a great little tool called the Minnesota Grown website.
Maintained by the Minnesota Department of Agriculture, the website is very user-friendly. You can search for farms by city, zip code or farm name. Or, if you’ve got a hankering for, say, strawberries or some fresh sweet corn, the website allows you to search by produce type as well. Included in the index of farms are independent family farms, farmer’s markets, CSAs, all-organic farms, and farms that sell animal products, textiles, gifts, and landscaping supplies. We also find it a great resource for planning fun family outings – many of the farms offer tours, animal encounters, wagon rides and, particularly in the fall, many other fun activities.
As July slips away, the strawberry season – though late this year – has mostly come to a close. Make sure to check out our pick-your-own address book below for updates! Read More
About the Author: Anne Kingston is a co-founder of Family Fun Twin Cities.