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A Guide To Apple Picking In The Boston Suburbs

September 27, 2013 6:00 AM

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(Photo from Dowse Orchards)

(Photo from Dowse Orchards)

Among these fine orchards and farms are hints and tips for the novice apple picker. Bring along bug spray or hose the family down before setting off to the orchard. Carry along a set of clippers for hard-to-pick juicy apples. Consider long-sleeved shirts and full-length pants just in case a family member is prone to scratches or abrasions. And lastly, for those times a step ladder isn’t available and you’ve set your sites on the top of an apple tree, bring along a short length of rope or string to temporarily pull down a branch to get the pick of the litter. Remember apples knocked to the ground may be considered picked so take your time and choose wisely.
An aerial view of Honey Pot Hill Orchards (Photo from Facebook)

An aerial view of Honey Pot Hill Orchards (Photo from Facebook)

Honey Pot Hill Orchards
138 Sudbury Road
Stow, MA 01775
(978) 562-5666
www.honeypothill.com

Honey Pot Hill Orchards has put together a variety of options for family pickings or outings for groups. Tempting choices for caramel apples, pies and cider donuts have been set aside in the apple shop. Hayrides back to family-fun activities with bags in tow are handy and relaxing after scouting for the best apples in the orchard. HPHO is known for its green maze monster and tunnel maze before the Halloween season. A catered BBQ picnic or clambake under the tent or at the picnic tables is just a quick call ahead. Being prepared will give you the full experience of a rich farm day outing. Check in at the pick-your-own booth and ask about the family fun pack.

(Credit: lookout farm.com)

(Credit: lookout farm.com)

Belkin Family Lookout Farm
89 Pleasant St. S.
South Natick, MA 01760
(508) 653-0653
www.thelookoutfarm.com

Follow the entrance sign to the U-pick barn, pay the admission price and hop on the train ride into the orchards. After a successful day of picking and picking some more with 11 varieties of apples, hitch a ride back to the children’s play area where a gigantic burlap maze awaits. Caterpillar rides, a hay stack pyramid and the wiggly worm are some of the other activities at the Lookout Farm. Take a break with fresh cider and a snack and head to the animal barn. Climb aboard a camel’s back, hitch a ride on a pony or lay back for a relaxing hay ride. The choices are many and the apples are a-plenty.

(Photo from Dowse Orchards)

(Photo from Dowse Orchards)

Dowse Orchards
98 N. Main St.
Sherborn, MA 01770
(508) 653-2639
www.dowseorchards.com

Any sized family member can pick their own apples without a ladder at Dowse Orchards. Dowse crew members are happy to assist you with any questions or any help you need to make sure you travel home with fresh apples by the dozens. Fifty acres of juicy farm-fresh apples make for fresh-pressed cider at the farm stand. The farm stand keeps a season variety of vegetables and home-grown flowers for that extra special addition to any table. Enjoying the day among the wide vistas and gorgeous views of Dowse Orchards makes this farm one of the locals’ favorite places to visit during picking seasons.

Related: Tips For Visiting Boston’s Farmers Markets With Kids

(Photo from The Big Apple Farm)

(Photo from The Big Apple Farm)

The Big Apple Farm
207 Arnold St.
Wrentham, MA 02093
(508) 384-3055
www.thebigapplefarm.com

The Big Apple Farm is a family favorite. This farm has such a rich array of apple products that you’re guaranteed to go home happy. Enjoy a cup of hot or cold cider after a day of picking and choosing your favorite apples throughout the 200 acres. Let the children find the hidden train before deciding to head in on foot. Between hand-dipped candy and caramel apples and famous cider donuts smothered in sugar and cinnamon, let The Big Apple Farm load you up with all kinds of apple treats.

Photo Credit: Nashoba Valley Winery

Photo Credit: Nashoba Valley Winery

Nashoba Valley Winery
100 Wattaquadock Hill Road
Bolton, MA 01740
(978) 779-5521
www.nashobawinery.com

Nashoba Valley Winery opens its orchards to the public every day of the week. The NVW may provide only certain varieties that are ripe and ready, so be on the apple alert by signing up for an email to get the latest up-to-date information on the growing season. Picnic lunches are an event unto themselves with bluegrass or blues and brews often featured. Take a picnic lunch to go or enjoy the gorgeous view from the open-air pavilion after the day’s outing comes to a close.

Related: Gardening With Gutner: Apple Picking Tips

Freelance Writer Corinne Costantino brings the “Best of Boston” to New England. Her work can be found on Examiner.com

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