Apple and pumpkin picking near New York City
A guide to tristate area orchards.
Mon Oct 19 2009
Applewood Orchards & Winery
Choose from eight kinds of apples—Macintosh, Cortland, Rome Beauty, Red Delicious, Empire, Macoun, Honeycrisp and Golden Delicious—at this upstate farm, which also sports a lush pumpkin patch, herb and rose gardens, and a general store stocked with myriad jams and jellies. Savor the on-site winery (just be sure to pick a designated driver!). 82 Four Corners Rd, Warwick (845-986-1684, applewoodorchards.com). Daily 9am-5pm through late October. $22.50 for a half bushel.
A 216-year-old white oak marks the center of this 122-acre farm filled with 25 apple varieties—everything from Cortland to Winesap. Not big on pommes? You can still enjoy gemstone mining and a five-acre corn maze. 63 Apple Tree Ln, Poughquag (845-227-2306, bartonorchards.com). Sat, Sun 9am--5pm through Oct 31. $2 (includes petting zoo, hayrides, kids' special events), $12 (corn maze and haunted house); children under 4 free. Apples: $14 for a quarter bushel, $20 for a half bushel.
Dr. Davies Farm
Though it's home to more than 4,000 apple trees spread across 40 acres, this Hudson Valley farm—originally built by Dr. Lucy Virginia Davies and her husband, Arthur, in 1891—is less than a half hour from the George Washington Bridge. Picking poles are available. Weekend hayrides ($5) stop at the farm's faux pumpkin patch, where you can pick small sugar pumpkins ($3 each) that were placed there but grown elsewhere. 306 Rte 304, Congers (845-268-7020, drdaviesfarm.com). Daily 10am--4:30pm through mid-November. $29 for a half bushel. Pole rental $3.
Dave and Jolee Dubois bought this 54-acre homestead in Ulster County when other local farms were dying out. Business is now booming, thanks to visitors who come to pick their own apples, plums, pears, tomatoes, grapes and pumpkins, and a bustling caf. Unlike most farms, Dubois accepts major credit cards. Home-cooked barbecue is served fresh noon-4pm on weekends. 209 Perkinsville Rd, Highland (845-795-4037, duboisfarms.com). Sat, Sun 10am--5pm through September; daily 10am--5pm Oct 1--Nov 8. 95 per pound.
With its stunning views of the Catskill Mountains and the on-site Alison Winery, the Greig Farm is an elegant spread. Greig's sells pick-your-own apples and fall raspberries along with pumpkins, plus a house cassis (adults only, of course) made from local black currants. For lunch, head to Gigi Market, where the menu showcases Hudson Valley produce, cheeses and meats. 223 Pitcher Ln, Red Hook (845-758-1234, greigfarm.com). Daily 9am--7pm. Pricing varies.
Hurds Family Farm
This farm caters to the seasons. In fall, expect plenty of apple-picking opportunities, and on select weekends leading up to the Christmas holiday, you can choose a tree from its crop of evergreens. Post-harvest, you can give the four-acre corn maze a go. Rte 32, Modena (845-883-7825, hurdsfamilyfarm.com). Daily 9am--5pm. Weekday admission $5, weekend admission $10, children under 3 free. $20 for a half bushel.
The world's tallest garden gnome, Chomsky, stands sentry at the entrance to Kelder's Farm. The spot offers all the classic fall farm amusements: a petting zoo, hayrides and a corn maze. But the biggest draw is a mini-golf course ($3.25) designed by artist Maria Reidelbach, coauthor of Miniature Golf (said to be the first book ever bound in artificial turf). The whimsical course is constructed from recycled tractor wheels and other repurposed farm implements. There are no apples to be plucked at the farm (though varieties from nearby orchards are sold there), the space is lined with plenty of vegetables, herbs, grains and other types of fruit. Daily 10am--6pm. 5755 Rte 209, Kerhonksen (845-626-7137, kelderfarm.com). Daily 10am--6pm. Pricing varies.
Lawrence Farms Orchards
In addition to Empire, Cortland, Macintosh, Macoun, Jonagold, Fuji, Granny Smith, and Red and Golden Delicious apples, this Newburgh farm cultivates a cornucopia of other fruits and vegetables. (From late September through October, pears, yellow peaches, grapes, sweet corn, tomatoes, pumpkins and other natural bounty are in season.) In late November, the farm reopens for the holiday season, with horse-drawn carriage rides, free cocoa and hot cider, and lots of Christmas trees for sale. 39 Colandrea Rd, Newburgh (845-562-4268, lawrencefarmsorchards.com). Daily 9am--4pm through Nov 1. Call for pricing.
Little Dog Orchard
This farm operates a little differently than most—instead of pilfering the entire orchard, you "lease" a particular tree (Red Delicious or Empire), then pick to your heart's content when it bears fruit. Little Dog is in the process of going organic, with no artificial pesticides used on crops. You can enjoy an outdoor lunch at one of the farm's picnic tables—just be sure to bring enough for the farm's namesake canine, Weasley. 40 Hurds Rd, Clintondale (917-692-8582, littledogorchard.com). By appointment only. $50.
Its name is no lie; tending to more than 15,000 fruit trees is proof enough that this farm hearts its harvest. Along with fall faves like a market and a petting zoo, there's also an old-fashioned ice cream shop, which serves cones and sundaes. 1421 Rte 9H, Ghent (518-828-5048). Daily 8am--6pm. $11 per half bushel, $20 per bushel.
Perennial pickers swear by this 200-acre, 15,000-tree orchard, the biggest fruit farm in Orange County and the first in the state to switch to pick-your-own (back in 1972). Visitors can drive right up and enjoy a picnic lunch under the tree of their choice. Don't be afraid to sample the goods: Here, unlike in Oz, snacking on apples while you pick is encouraged! Wagon rides, barnyard animals and pony rides add to the atmosphere on weekends. 45 Ball Rd, Warwick (845-986-1058, maskers.com). Daily 9am--5pm through early November. $24.95 for a half bushel.
Milk Pail Farm and Orchard
At this 40-year-old homestead (which started out as a dairy farm), you can pluck the 15 different varieties of apples that grow on dwarf apple trees. Also available: Wagon-led farm tours, fresh cider at the Milk Pail country store and a pumpkin patch with gourds weighing up to 150 pounds.1346 Montauk Hwy, Water Mill (631-537-2565, milk-pail.com). Fri--Sun 10am--5:30pm. $28 for a half bushel.
Construction executive Derrick Doubrava purchased this Hudson Valley farm in 2003, but it's been a family-owned orchard for more than century. Visitors take a hay-wagon ride to more than 100 acres of easy-to-reach apples and—as the season allows—areas devoted to peaches, nectarines, Asian pears, strawberries, pumpkins and other veggies. Doubrava's wife, Debbie, a former banker, is something of a local legend for her homemade apple-cider doughnuts, available at the farm market. 59 Hurds Rd, Clintondale (866-632-7753, minardfarms.com). Sat, Sun 9am--6pm through Nov 1. $18 for a half bushel.
Mr. Apples Orchard
Philip "Apples" (his well-earned nickname) inherited this orchard from his parents but utilizes a modern, Earth-friendly approach to farming and sprays his apples and pears with only a minimal amount of pesticides. McIntosh and Cortlands are at peak in September, while October is prime time for Red. Phil says you can still pick in November: "A light frost won't hurt 'em." This part of Ulster County is rife with natural wonders, including the nearby Rondout River and its eye-catching waterfalls, so leave time for an invigorating hike. Rte 213 West, High Falls (845-687-9498, mrapples.com). Daily 9am--5pm until mid-November. Call ahead for reservations and pricing.
The Orchards of Concklin
The highlight at this venerable orchard (it's been around since 1712!) is its picturesque half-acre corn maze. From April through the end of the year, each month boasts a special offering; expect plenty of apple- and pumpkin-picking in October, and in November freshly baked Thanksgiving pies are up for sale. Sample a homemade quiche or pick out a pumpkin to take home. 2 South Mountain Rd, Pomona (845-354-0369, theorchardsofconcklin.com). Sat-Sun 10am--5pm. $1.25 per pound plus $1 pole rental fee.
Its name may not inspire hunger pangs, but Outhouse's mouthwatering selection of homemade doughnuts, fudge, pies and other goodies will. No sweet tooth? Then gnaw on a smoked turkey leg, one of the savory options available here. 130 Hardscrabble Rd, Croton Falls (914-277-3188, outhouseorchards.info). Daily 10am--5pm. $20 per half bushel.
See spectacular views of Warwick Valley as you enjoy a hayride through Pennings' expansive orchard. Hop off to say hey to miniature donkeys, goats and peacocks, then amble along the paths lined with apple trees from which you can pick 19 varieties of the tart treats. An equally impressive pumpkin patch awaits across the fields. 169 South Rte 94, Warwick (845-986-7080, penningsorchard.com). Daily 9am--5pm. $25 per half bushel.
Stone Ridge Orchard
Sustainability is the name of the game at this orchard, which prides itself on its eco-friendly farming practices as well as its 30-plus varieties of gourmet apples. Grab a freshly made smoothie from the orchard's caf or stock up on seasonal vegetables including potatoes, tomatoes and sweet corn at the market. 3012 Rte 213, Stone Ridge (845-687-2587, stoneridgeorchard.us). Daily 10am--6pm. $1.25--$3 per pound.