I have heard many friends rave about Homestead Farms and I was ready to see what all the excitement is about.
Nestled on a country road not far from Potomac is a 230-acre farm which brings visitors from all over to pick and enjoy homegrown fruits and vegetables. The Allnutt family has been farming the land since 1763.
When my child and I arrived a little before noon, the grassy parking lot leading to the entrance was quite full. There was a happy bustle of people despite the recent rainfall and it being a hot, muggy day.
Inside the farm market, I asked for directions and a picking pole. The cashier stated to make a right by the animal pen and follow the small hill to the orchard; a three minute walk.
When to Go
The apple season at Homestead Farm usually starts in late-August and goes until late- October. Of course, the exact dates depend on nature.
While there are a number of different varieties of apples, some do get picked out quicker than others. Different varities also ripen at different times in the season.
If you’re looking to pick a particular variety, it’s best to go early in the morning to make sure it’s not picked out by the time you go.
Picking Apples at Homestead Farms
There is a $3 admission fee to enter the farm which gives you:
- Access to pick-your-own areas (the produce is sold separately)
- Farm animals
- Picnic tables
- Grassy area and hay stack
- Farm refreshment stand
We picked all the varieties they had including: Cameo, Suncrisp and Fuji.
Having never heard of Suncrisp, I did some research. Suncrisp is a crisp, firm yellow apple with a red blush. It is the result of cross-breeding Golden Delicious, Cortland, and Cox’s Orange Pippin apples.
The Barn Animals at Homestead Farm
Another treat at Homestead Farm is visiting the barn animals. They have goats, sheep, piglets, hens, ducks, a turkey and a cow.
You can purchase a mini cup of food to feed the goats and sheep. My daughter coaxed two of them to come down the goat walk by shaking the cup of food.
Kids will enjoy climbing on the nearby hay bales and tires located near the pond.
The Country Market
Homestead Farm has many edible temptations before you leave the facility. The country market carries:
- honey made from bees on the farm
- cold drinks
- preservative-free apple cider
- packaged ice-cream bars
- loaves from Spring Mill Bread Company
- pumpkin cookies
- pre-picked apples
- and a variety of fall vegetables.
You can also purchase pumpkins, gourds, corn stalks, hay bales and mums.
The Country Kitchen
The country kitchen sells homemade vegetable soup, hot dogs, chips, apple pie a la mode, pumpkin pie, soda, water, hot chocolate and hot cider.
I love everything apples and I salivated at the idea of a slice of homemade apple pie, but my heart was set on a caramel apple. Homestead Farm did not disappoint! The apple was a delicious Empire smothered in gooey caramel. Typing this makes me want another one!
I would like to return to pick some pumpkins. I was impressed with the friendly staff, ease and speed of checkout and the overall experience itself.
As the saying goes…an apple a day keeps the doctor away. Plan your apple fix before the season ends at Homestead Farm.
Good to Know Before You Go
Port-a-potties and hand sinks are located throughout the farm. It’s also a good idea to bring hand wipes, especially when petting the animals or rolling in the hay.
There are also some photo cut-outs nearby which make for cute pictures. In front of the covered pavilion is a makeshift water fountain.
- Apple season usually starts in late-August / early-September and goes into late- October (usually)
- Parking and admission are free.
- Educational field trips are available for school and other groups. Reservations are required.
- Other produce is available throughout the year based on planting and harvest times. Strawberries: May to June; Tart Cherries: July; Blackberries: July to August; Assorted Vegetables, Peaches & Nectarines: July to September; Pumpkins: September to October; Christmas trees and wreaths are for sale in December.
- You can walk to the pumpkin patch, but on the weekends, hop on a hayride
- Wear sturdy shoes or rain boots because it can get muddy.
Homestead Farm is located at 15604 Sugarland Road, Poolesville, Maryland 20837