Nothing is quite like sun-ripened strawberries still warm from the fields. Make a plan to pick your own this year!

Mid- to late-May is prime picking season for strawberries in our area. Pack a lunch and drive out to one of these berry fields for some family fun on the farm.

Shlagel Farms

ADDRESS: 12850 Shlagel Road | Waldorf, MD
PHONE: (301) 645-4554

This family farm was founded in 1911 and prides itself on being a great place for kids. They often have rain day specials and also sell reduced-priced flats of berries for making jam. It doesn't get much better than that! They also have bedding plants and colorful hanging baskets for sale, as well as hay and straw for all of your garden needs.

For more information, visit their Facebook page or the Shlagel Farms website.

strawberries

Courtesy of Shlagel Farms

Gardenhour Orchards

ADDRESS: 22511 Gardenhour Road | Smithsburg, MD
PHONE: (301) 824-7466

Most of the reviews mention how friendly everyone is here! Make sure you bring cash; they don't accept credit cards for strawberry season. The Gardenhour family has been farming in Maryland since the 1890s and this is a fourth-generation establishment now!

For more information, they recommend you give them a call at the number above or see their Facebook page for updates.

strawberry fields

Courtesy of Gardenhour Orchards

Butler's Orchard

ADDRESS: 22222 Davis Mill Road | Germantown, MD
PHONE: (301) 428-0444

It's all about fun at Butler's Orchard. Even before the berries are ready, they're running strawberry blossom tours! They have a gorgeous farm market with all sorts of regionally sourced, organic items like lettuce, hothouse tomatoes, and mushrooms.

There is a $3 admission fee for accessing the picking fields, but it also includes the picnic area, giant slides, nature trail, and petting zoo. 

For more information, visit their Facebook page or the Butler's Orchard website.

strawberries

Courtesy of Butler's Orchard

Gorman Produce Farm

ADDRESS: 10151 Gorman Road | Laurel, MD
PHONE: (301) 908-8063

Keep an eye on their Facebook page for updates on their u-pick berry fields. This organic farm runs its own CSA and is proud of its ties to the Howard County community. They are known regionally for their high-quality produce and farming methods.

strawberry field

Courtesy of Gorman Farm

Tips on Picking Strawberries

  • Only go for all-red berries – they do not continue to ripen once picked.
  • Remember, it's a marathon, not a sprint. Take your time and choose carefully because strawberries only last a few days at room temperature.
  • Leave early to head to the farm. U-pick folks are early risers, and some fields may be closed by lunchtime. 
  • Pick each berry about 1/2" up, by pinching the stem carefully. Teach the smaller kids to be careful of the plants.
  • Only wash the berries right before you use them. Rinsing them can promote early rot.
  • Freeze washed, hulled whole berries for months of summer flavor. Enjoy the fruits of your labor well into the fall!

For more tips on how to handle and use freshly picked strawberries, visit this u-pick information site.

Pickyourown.org is a great resource for finding farms in your state. Check them out and see if there are other strawberry fields near you!

Are you heading out to pick strawberries this year? Where do you go? Drop us a line in the comments and tell us your favorite Maryland farm or orchard!