There are many types of U-pick farms in Florida, but strawberries are one of the most popular.
U-pick farms are surprisingly fun and they’re a thing to do for families with kids.
Strawberry picking can also be a fun date idea! Some farms are really charming and cute, although some fields are basically just drab, industrial-feeling fields.
Here are our picks for the best U-pick strawberry farms. We also included fruit picking tips and advice below.
Note: It’s always smart to confirm farm hours, availability and details before going. Many of these farms are low-tech and websites may not be updated. Calling ahead is advised.
Honeyside Farms is a small 12-acre organic farm. Honeyside Farms grows more than 20 organic vegetables which are available from November until May.
Honeyside Farms also offers vegetable produce subscriptions and sells produce at the Lakewood Ranch Farmers Market. Honeyside Farms is a certified organic U-pick farm.
Honeyside Farms’ U-pick is only open during specific windows. As always, be sure to check with the farm before making plans to visit.
Location: 24105 FL-62, Parrish, FL 34219
Nearby Cities: Sarasota, Bradenton, Tampa, Lakewood Ranch, Lakeland
Contact Information: (941) 405-0015
Strawberry Passion Farms (Organic)
Passion Organics Farm is family-operated and is certified organic. There is also a farm market and a “shake shack” which sells strawberry milkshakes, strawberry shortcake and more. Strawberry Passion also has sunflower fields.
Location: 11740 Tom Folsom Rd, Thonotosassa, FL 33592
Nearby Cities: Tampa, St. Petersburg, Clearwater, Lakeland
Contact Information: (813) 735-6706
Far Reach Ranch
Far Reach Ranch is located in central Florida, on the banks of Lake Dora.
Far Reach Farm is family-owned and operated. In the past the farm has grown oranges and has operated as a cattle ranch. Today it grows blueberries, strawberries and other types of berries.
Far Reach Ranch offers U-pick strawberries, blackberries, blueberries. They also sell honey, various jams and baked goods.
The farm also serves as a wedding venue and as a host for events with live music concerts.
Location: 1255 S. Dora Blvd., Tavares, FL 32778
Nearby Cities: Mount Dora, Orlando, The Villages, Lake Mary
Contact Information: (352) 343-7389
Brown & Brown Farms
Brown & Brown Farms is a large farm and has a variety of things to do, ranging from sunflower fields to corn mazes, festivals and Christmas events.
They also sell produce, jam, canned goods, baked goods, and a variety of other products in their large country store. The store feels well-organized and well-run.
Location: 3940 US HWY 301, Oxford, FL 34480
Nearby Cities: The Villages, Ocala, Crystal River, Orlando, Gainesville
Contact Information: 352-748-2085
Oak Haven Farm and Winery
Oak Haven Farms is a small, family-run farm. Besides being a working farm there is also a winery on-site. The farm also sells baked goods, salsas, local hooney and more on-site, alongside their large wine selection.
Oak Haven Farms is located in a beautiful area of central Florida which actually has some hills. There is also a beautiful and stately Grand Daddy Oak tree.
Location: 32418 Avington Rd, Sorrento, FL 32776
Nearby Cities: Mt. Dora, Orlando, Lake mary
Contact Information: (352) 735-1996
Roger’s Farm/Crossroads Farm and Apiary
Crossroads Farm and Apiary is a family-run farm which also includes an apiary, or a bee colony. The farm used to be called Roger’s Farm under the previous owners.
There is a farm store which sells produce, local crafts, raw local honey and more. Besides the U-pick strawberry picking. The farm also hosts a fall festival.
Pre-picked strawberries are also available for sale.
Location: 3831 NW 156th Ave, Gainesville, FL 32609
Nearby Cities: Gainesville
Contact Information: (386) 462-2406
Amber Brooke Farms
Amber Brooke Farms has two locations; one in Eustis and one in Williston. Be sure to check and use details from the right location.
Besides strawberries the farm also has sunflowers, blueberries, peaches and zinnias, all depending on the season. Pre-picked strawberries are also available for sale.
There are also festivals and events, including a strawberry festival, an Easter egg hunt, blueberry festival, peach festival, fall festival and Christmas festival.
This is a cash-free U-pick farm, which only accepts debit and credit cards.
- Williston: 3250 NE 140th Ave, Williston, FL 32696
- Eustis: 36111 County Rd 44A, Eustis, FL 32736:
- Williston: (352) 638-7849
- Eustis: +1 (352) 973-1963
JG Ranch is a boutique farm, family-owned and operated.
This farm grows and sells a variety of berries, including strawberries, blackberries and blueberries. JG Ranch provides buckets for strawberry picking and for taking berries home.
Their strawberry season varies but generally lasts from November until April. Blueberry season is from April until May. Blackberry season is in May and June.
JG Ranch also raises cattle and offers beef for sale, along with honey and other produce.
JG Ranch accepts cash, checks and credit cards.
This farm is not organic.
Location: 17200 Wiscon Rd, Brooksville, FL 34601
Nearby Cities: Brooksville, Tampa, The Villages, Orlando, Ocala
Contact Information: (352) 799-0556
Upicktopia covers approximately 56 acres and includes blueberries and other fruits and vegetables. The farm was previously a conventionally harvested farm but has transitioned to U-pick. There is also a boutique winery on-site, the Marsaryk Winery. This is not an organic farm.
Upicktopia also grows pumpkins, vegetables, blueberries and blackberries. Strawberries are picked from approximately mid-October until mid-April.
This farm accepts credit/debit cards.
Location: 19125 Phillips rd Masaryktown FL 34604
Nearby Cities: Brooksville, Tampa
Contact Information: 352 308 0110
Pappy’s Patch U-pick is one of the closest U-pick strawberry farms near Orlando.
Pappy’s Patch doesn’t have many of the cute charm that other U-pick farms in Florida have, but visitors say the experience is still good and the strawberries are delicious.
The farm is located along a really pretty old Florida highway with beautiful oak trees and Spanish moss.
This is a popular thing to do near Orlando so it can get crowded, but the parking lot and fields are large to fit large numbers of visitors. There are attendants on-site and will provide cardboard trays for strawberry picking.
Location: 501 Florida Ave, Oviedo, FL 32765
Nearby Cities: Orlando, Titusville, New Smyrna Beach
Spivey Farms is a family farm. It was started in 1969, and is still family-run today. It started as a small 5-acre farm and has grown over the years.
Strawberries are the main crop at Spivey Farms and they’re the only crop available for U-pick.
Spivey Farms is located in Plant City, about 25 miles east of Tampa
There are often other locally grown fruits and veggies for sale as well. Spivey farms only accepts cash. There are portable toilets on-site.
Spivey farms is not organic.
Location: 6101 S County Rd 39, Plant City, FL 33567
Nearby Cities: Tampa, St. Petersburg, Lake City
Contact Information: (813) 650-8999
What month is best for strawberry picking?
Florida’s winter months and early spring are best for strawberry picking. Florida’s summer weather is too hot for strawberries to grow.
What is strawberry season in Florida?
Winter is strawberry season in Florida. In Florida strawberries are grown in winter and are harvested in the winter and spring. Strawberry harvest usually lasts through April but it does vary depending on the season and weather.
What city in Florida is known for strawberries?
Plant City is known for its strawberries. Plant City is known as the Winter Strawberry Capital of the World. Most strawberries in Florida are grown in Plant City, or nearby. Approximately 75% of America’s winter strawberries come from Plant City. Plant City also hosts an annual event, the Florida Strawberry Festival, every winter. In the past Plant City was known for producing cotton, citrus, cattle and lumber, but is now the strawberry capital of the world.
Note: Plant City was named after famous Florida business tycoon Henry B. Plant; the city’s name is not a reference to actual plants.
Tips and Things to Know Before for Visiting U-Pick Strawberry Farms in Florida
Here are some strawberry picking tips suggested and compiled from experienced pickers.
U-Pick Farm Etiquette
U-pick farms are real working farms, and they’re people’s livelihoods, so please be respectful.
Here are some U-pick farm tips:
- Nobody should ever step over the crops, jump on over them, or on them!
- Watch kids closely! Teach them to be respectful and how to handle delicate crops to avoid damage.
- Be sure to follow directions and ask where you can and can’t go, and what’s allowed.
- Don’t damage the plastic grow liners, it creates more work for the farmers.
- Dogs aren’t allowed due to food handling regulations.
The best fruit is often picked clean by other pickers so it’s a good idea to arrive early in the season, and early in the day.
There are often a lot of bees near strawberry farms because bees are needed for strawberry pollination. People who are afraid or allergic to bee stings may want to keep this in mind.
Fertilizer and Pesticides
Most farms use chemical fertilizer and pesticides, and are not organic.
It’s a good idea to ask the farm staff about pesticides and fertilizer. Many people like to bring wet wipes to wipe hands, or some way to clean hands. I feel most comfortable washing my hands with soap and water to better remove any pesticides or fertilizer.
What to Expect
You may get sweaty and dirty while picking fruit, especially if it’s rained recently. It’s best not to wear clothes or shoes you don’t want to get muddy or dirty.
It’s a good idea to wear sturdy closed-toed shoes to avoid filthy feet, and for safety.
It’s easy to get dehydrated while picking strawberries in full-sun. It’s a good idea to bring drinks and water, and stay hydrated.
Picking strawberries can be tiring, especially while hunching over. Keep this in mind for people with a bad back or mobility challenges.
Caring for Strawberries
One small downside to U-pick strawberries is that they can feel softer than commercially harvested berries due to the longer ripening process.
On the other hand, U-pick strawberries are often sweeter and more delicious than store-bought strawberries because they’re allowed to ripen longer and naturally, rather than being picked and forced to ripen artificially.
Many people suggest bringing a cooler to keep the berries cool so they’ll last longer after picking.
Heat will make the strawberries go bad and spoil faster. It’s best to keep the berries out of the sun and avoid living in a hot car. Some farms don’t allow coolers though, so keep that in mind.
It’s a good idea to check whether a farm provides baskets or containers. Some provide containers, some don’t.
If you bring your own container it’s best to bring shallow containers, rather than deep buckets.
Piling the strawberries up on top of each other puts weight and pressure on the berries, possibly causing bruising or damage.
It’s important to carefully place the berries in your container to avoid damaging or bruising the fruit.
Most strawberry farms use fertilizers and pesticides. Some U-pick strawberry farms are certified organic.
Regardless of organic status it’s best to wash and hull strawberries before eating. But some people eat them in the field without washing, but most farms suggest washing first.
Be sure to check whether “sampling” is allowed. Some U-pick farms allow limited “sampling” of strawberries in the fields, while others ask you to pay for everything you pick.
Price and Payment
Most U-pick strawberry farms usually sell strawberries by weight.
Most U-pick farms are free to visit and you only pay for the price of the produce you pick.
But, every farm is a little different. Some fields may charge to enter the field.
Many farms charge parking fees or admission fees during special events. Be sure to check the website or call ahead before you go.
Many u-pick strawberry farms are cash-only, or cash-free and only accept debit or credit cards.
Facilities and Restrooms
Strawberries need full-sun to grow, so U-pick strawberry farms are usually wide-open and usually don’t have much natural shade or tree cover. It’s smart to be prepared for a lot of sun. Hats, sun-protective clothing and sunglasses are advised.
Most U-pick farms have some sort of facility for guests to use the restroom. It may be a port-a-potty, or it may be a nice farm store with fancy restrooms. It’s best to check what sort of facilities the farm may have, especially if visiting with children.
Cover photo by Mick Haupt