These days we are all trying to be a little bit healthier by consuming more fruit and vegetables in the place of meat and reducing our food miles by choosing local, seasonal options wherever possible.
Luckily there are lots of farms throughout the UK where you can buy the freshest local produce directly from the growers and large fields of fruit, berries, vegetables and flowers where you can pick your own strawberries, apples, cherries, rhubarb, runner beans and sunflowers.
Kett Country Cottages have looked into the UK’s most popular PYO fruit and vegetable items and compared places throughout the country to help you find the best places to pick your own produce.
The UK’s best PYO farms
To crown the best places to pick your own produce we have looked at Google ratings, Instagram hashtags, the varieties of produce that can be picked and what other things are available at the site such as cafes, farm shops and activities.
Millets Farm, Oxfordshire
Not only are there lots of types of fruit and vegetables available to pick at Millets Farm but there are also lots of things to do at the Oxfordshire estate including animal experiences, woodland walks, play areas and a maize maze.
Sopley Farm PYO, Dorset
This Dorset farm has an idyllic location at the edge of The New Forest with 8 different types of berries along with other fruit, vegetables and flowers available to pick straight from the fields. There’s also an on-site bakery and lots of ready-picked produce available in the farm shop.
Kenyan Hall Farm, Cheshire
This Cheshire farm is a great option for visiting with kids as there are lots of hands-on farming experiences and the chance for children to grow their own veg. A variety of berries, beans and peas can be picked along with sweetcorn, onions and yellow maize.
Cairnie Farming, Fife
You can pick an assortment of berries along with cherries and brambles on this 120-acre fruit farm in Fife. Sunflowers can also be picked in September and pumpkins in October and there’s always lots of fun to be had on a visit with jumping pillows, rides, mazes and even a play area for dogs.
Crockford Bridge, Surrey
The picking season starts early at Crockford Bridge with both rhubarb and asparagus available from May and culminates in a pick your own Christmas tree experience in December. There are regular events at the farm throughout the year including a fun Halloween festival.
Durleighmarsh Farm, Hampshire
This family-run farm has a beautiful location in the Hampshire countryside with a wide variety of PYO fruit and vegetables with everything from beetroot and blackberries to strawberries and sweetcorn plus a well-stocked farm shop which is chock-full of fresh local produce.
Farmer Copleys, Yorkshire
Farmer Copleys is famous for its fabulous pumpkin festival with more than 20 varieties of them to pick and lots of family-friendly activities. There is also a butcher, baker and gelato counter in the on-site farm shop and strawberry picking in the summer.
Sandringham Estate, Norfolk
I mean where else can you pick produce from the Queen’s own estate? The orchards here were started by King George VI and are used to produce cider and apple juice. Two types of apple are available to pick; bramley and cox.
Cattows Farm, Leicestershire
You’ll find woodland walks, a corn maize and a lovely tea room serving elegant afternoon teas at Cattows Farm in Leicestershire. Pick your own options include a variety of berries along with pumpkins and sunflowers.
Parkside Farm, London
This 400-acre farm is located close to Enfield and has been run by the same family since 1938 and along with the large selection of PYO options, there are scenic walks around the large estate and a petting zoo that is very popular with kids.
Best PYO fruit farms
If you’re looking to pick fruit at the farm this year, here are the five best overall places to go along with top UK spots for berries, apples and plums.
- Millets Farm, Oxfordshire
- Sopley Farm PYO, Dorset
- Cairnie Farming, Fife
- Durleighmarsh Farm, Hampshire
- Kenyan Hall Farm, Cheshire
Looking for a specific fruit to pick?
The best PYO farm for berries - Sopley Farm PYO
The best PYO farm for apples - Sandringham Estate
The best PYO farm for plums - Leith House Orchards
Best PYO vegetable farms
Stock up on your fresh seasonal vegetables at these top 5 PYO farms in the UK and discover the best place to get pumpkins, broad beans and asparagus.
- Ansty PYO
- Roundstone Farm
- Stanhill Farm
- Grove Farm
- Brooke Farm
Looking for a specific vegetable to pick?
The best PYO farms for pumpkins - Cattows Farm
The best PYO farms for broad beans - Crockford Bridge
The best PYO farms for asparagus - Secretts Farm
Best PYO flower farms
Picking your own produce isn't just about food, you can also pick freshly grown flowers throughout the UK with the most popular option being bright yellow sunflowers.
- Sopley Farm PYO
- Charleton Farm
- Rectory Farm
- Hill Farm
- Kenyon Hall Farm
Other farms offering pick your own flowers include:
- Cairnie Farming, Fife
- Cobbs Farm, Berkshire
- Shute Fruit and Produce, Devon
- Cherry Gardens, Kent
- Craigies Farm, Edinburgh
The UK’s most popular PYO fruits
Strawberries are the clear winner as the UK’s most popular item to pick with almost 80% of farms offering them as a PYO option. Raspberries come in second place and are available at 70% of farms and blackcurrants are third and found at 43% of PYO places.
The complete top ten is:
The UK’s most popular PYO squashes and vegetables
Picking your own pumpkin has become increasingly popular in the run up to Halloween and 28% of farms that we looked at now have this option available. Broad beans and peas are both classic British vegetable patch items so it’s no surprise that they take 2nd and 3rd place on our list.
The complete top ten is:
|2. Broad Beans||21%|
The best time of year to PYO fruit and vegetables
From springtime to late autumn, there are different fruits and vegetables available to pick, starting with asparagus in May and ending with pumpkins in October. Summer is the peak season for picking your own produce with British classics like strawberries and raspberries in plentiful supply.
|Rhubarb||June and July|
|Broad beans||June and July|
|Strawberries||June - August|
|Pea||June - August|
|Raspberries||July - August|
|Potatoes||July - October|
|Apples||August and September|
|Plum||August and September|
|Pumpkins||September and October|
Pick your own produce in Norfolk
As well as picking apples at Sandringham, which is one of the UK's favourite royal estates, you can pick your own produce at these PYO farms in Norfolk:
- Wiveton Hall
- Fairgreen Farms
- The White House
- The Tacons
- Hillfield Nursery
If you fancy sampling some of the wonderful array of fresh produce available in Norfolk including strawberries, blackberries, lavender, sweet peas and plums, you'll find a great selection of countryside cottages for a short break or holiday.
Disclaimer: Whilst every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of the information at the time of writing,
please ensure you check carefully before making any decisions based on the contents within this article.