Drazen Orchards farm in Cheshire, CT. |Kristen Dearborn, Special to Record-Journal

5 tips for picking your own fruit at Drazen Orchards

5 tips for picking your own fruit at Drazen Orchards

5 tips for picking your own fruit at Drazen Orchards

Drazen Orchards in Cheshire offers a wide array of fruits to be harvested throughout the summer season. Designated Farmer-in-Chief Gordon Drazen established an Integrated Pest Management system on the farm which allows the fruit to flourish with the most natural means possible.

The farm stand also has an impressive assortment of fruits, vegetables, and artisan products from other local farms and businesses.

Picking your own fruit in the summer is a great way to spend time with family at a safe distance, get active outdoors, and learn more about where your food comes from. 

1. Call ahead

Drazen Orchards website invites harvesters to call ahead before arriving to pick their own fruit as the harvesting season of particular fruits is highly date specific. 

This past Friday, the peach harvesting season began. Visitors can now harvest peaches in addition to blueberries for the remainder of the month of August and into mid-September.  

The farm stand is open from 9AM-6PM but be sure to weigh your buckets at the register no later than 5:30pm.

2. Dress for the occasion 

Picking your own fruits allows you to connect with nature as you kneel in the earth to pluck ripened berries or brush against leaves while reaching for the perfect peach. 

Be sure that you wear comfortable shoes. Wear high socks and bring napkins in case you get dirty as you make your way through the orchard. 

Wear plenty of sunscreen and light-colored clothing so you don’t get too hot. Be conscious that white may not be the best color if you anticipate being up to your elbows in bright-colored fruit.

Using a backpack to carry supplies is an ideal way to keep your hands free for harvesting.

3. Learn how to identify ripe fruit

Use a discerning eye and a keen touch to determine whether or not fruit is ready to be harvested. 

Ripe blueberries are a dusty color blue and firm to the touch. Purple and green berries, no matter their size, are not quite ready to be pulled from their bush.

Peaches with a deep red-orange hue, robust shape, and delightful smell are ripe for the picking. 

Leave those that are green or not fully formed on the tree for the next pickers to harvest once they are ripe.

4. Practice proper hygiene 

Drazen Orchards takes proper hygiene very seriously as they strive to keep their produce and customers safe and germ-free.

At each of the entrances to the farm stand there are sanitation stations where visitors can clean their hands and put on plastic gloves.

Shoppers are asked to only touch produce with gloves on and the pick your own buckets are lined with plastic bags. 

Customers should expect to wear their masks inside and maintain their distance from others.

5. Take a look around

Make sure to browse the farm stand for locally grown produce such as Korean cucumbers and artisan products like Napoli pizza sauce. 

Drazen Orchards has a lot to offer visitors from Hot House and Arisco Farms veggies to their own locally produced honey. 

For more information on Drazen Orchards visit: https://www.drazenorchards.com/


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