Pick and Preserve
Preserving fresh berries and fruits is a task that pays off all year long. And now, at the height of the growing season, is the best time to get the goods. Look for a local farm that practices organic and sustainable growing methods. Even better if that farm has a you-pick option. Harvesting your own berries and fruits is typically the most economical way to get the large amount you’ll need for preserving. And if you have kids, there’s nothing they’ll love more than helping pick the food your family will enjoy for months to come.
Hudson County residents are lucky to have some quality you-pick farms and orchards an hour or two away. Make sure to double-check crop availability online or by phone before leaving home.
Greig Farm, 227 Pitcher Lane, Red Hook, NY \
Located a couple of hours from Jersey City, Greig Farms is open from 8am to 8pm for blueberry-picking seven days a week. An online picking schedule will tell you what other fruit and berries are ready. Greig Farms also has a Farm Market.
Hillview Farms, 223 Meyersville Road, Gillette, NJ
Less than an hour drive from Hoboken is Hillview Farms, some 53 acres of locally grown fruit. Picking is to 5:30pm. According to their online schedule, they have blueberries ready, and this month they should also have peaches. The farm has a $5 entry fee per person, children under three are free. Hillview also has a farm market.
Alstede Farms, 1 Alstede Farms Lane, Chester, NJ
About an hour away from Jersey City is Alstede’s fruit-picking farm, open daily to the public from 9am to 6pm. They have a variety of fruit and veggies, and it’s the perfect time to pick-your-own juicy strawberries, blueberries and blackberries. They have a large farm market.
Ochs Orchard, 4 Ochs Lane, Warwick, NY
Ochs Orchard is a
little over 90 minutes from Hoboken, but worth the trip. Call ahead to see what’s pickable, but the
farm generally has an abundance of strawberries and blueberries this time of
year, and picking is to 6pm. There is a farm market.