7 Pick Your Own Apple Orchards in Maryland
Nothing pairs with beautiful fall foliage quite like an autumn afternoon picking apples. This classic fall tradition provides an opportunity for the whole family to get outdoors and enjoy some fresh air before we all begin to hunker down for the winter. Luckily, there are a number of fantastic orchards and apple picking farms in Maryland, and most offer a plethora of additional activities which allow you to stretch your visit out for a full fall day.
Here are seven places to spend a beautiful autumn day craft shopping, hay riding, and apple picking in Maryland.
1. Butler’s Orchard
22222 Davis Mill Road
Germantown, MD 20876
Decades ago, George and Shirley Butler began growing and selling peaches on their 37-acre farm. Today they have over 25 varieties of fruits, veggies, flowers, and trees on over 300 acres!
The Butler’s Orchard Farm Market sells everything from local honey to seasonal décor, and of course, cider. The Farm Park features giant slides, farm animals, tractors, a playground, and a combine slide. While the kids play, adults can enjoy a meal at the Farmer’s Porch, which serves an small bites, sandwiches, pizzas, and an array of seasonal dishes.
But of course, the main attraction is their “pick your own” orchard. While walk ins are welcome, priority is given to those who make a reservation, and slots tend to fill up quickly. The cost to pick your own is just $3/person. What you are able to pick during your visit is dependent upon what’s in season. Prime apple picking season is upon us and there are also plenty of raspberries, flowers, and potatoes to choose from between now and the end of fall.
2. Waters Orchard
22711 Wildcat Rd
Germantown, MD 20876
This beautiful orchard in Montgomery County has been around for years, but what sets it apart from the other apple orchards in Maryland with pick your own options is that they recently began selling their own Doc Waters (hard) Cider, which is of course made from apples grown right on the farm. Current ciders include options such as Wildcat Woods Reserve, Hopped Ciders, and their Orchard Blend.
Now on to the apples themselves! Apple-picking is available each weekend by reservation and includes quite the variety of options throughout the season. Generally speaking, you can expect a typical harvest schedule, but check their website for detailed availability. The aromatic Honeycrisp ripens in early September. The sweeter, less acidic Shizuka variety is ready for picking a week or so later. Fuji and Pink Lady varietals can be snagged at the end of September. Suncrisp, Granny Smith, and Gold Rush (among others) are ready in October. Simply choose your bag size and get to picking.
3. Larriland Farm
2415 Woodbine Rd
Woodbine, MD 21797
Larriland’s growing season begins in late May or early June with the ripening of the strawberry crop, and it ends with the apple harvest in early November. Located mid-way between Baltimore and Frederick the location makes Larriland a popular apple picking destination, and their sister farm, the Moore Farm, grows pumpkins for an October harvest.
Larriland Farm has roughly 25 apple varieties as well as broccoli, cabbage, radishes, turnips, and more. Their Red Barn Farm Market is filled with local veggies, honey, dairy products, artisan bread, eggs, and of course apples!
The “Pick Your Own” program is priced based on container size and available crops vary based on growing season as well as customer demand. Reference the Today’s Harvest page for the most up-to-date picking information. Then, once you bring your bounty home, check out their recipes for an autumn inspired meal!
Visit the farm in mid-to late fall and enjoy the gorgeous color display, including fields dotted with thousands of orange pumpkins and festive Halloween décor. Hayrides are offered on the weekend, which just so happens to be when food trucks are on-site, too! You can’t go wrong with a visit to Larriland.
4. Kingsbury’s Orchard
19415 Peach Tree Rd
Dickerson, MD 20842
The history of Kingsbury’s Orchard dates to 1907 when Edwin and Minerva Horine began farming the land upon which the orchard sits. Twenty-five years later, their son came up with the brilliant idea to grow and sell peaches as a way to help his family weather the Great Depression. Fast forward a few decades and you’ll Find Kingsbury’s Orchard a favorite place to pick your own apples in Maryland.
As peach season comes to an end, apple season picks up in its place. Kingsbury’s has varieties such as Gala, Honeycrisp, Stayman, and Granny Smith literally ripe for the picking. This is a true mom and pop operation, so you won’t find a ton of fanfare, here. No pumpkin patches or hayrides, but don’t let that discourage you from taking the trip to Kingsbury’s. These farmers are the real deal, and their operation runs beautifully (and deliciously). Definitely worth the trip!
5. Homestead Farm
15604 Sugarland Rd
Poolesville, MD 20837
You can’t beat a $2 admission and pay-by-the-pound apple picking. Maryland’s Homestead Farm offers not only a pick your own apple orchard, but farm animals to pet, a hay stack to romp in, weekend refreshments, and a farm market! Just one glance at their annual photo album will make you want to hop in the car and race to enjoy a beautiful fall day at the farm.
If apples aren’t your thing, don’t worry. Homestead is more than just an apple picking farm. In Maryland you can find a variety of fruit harvests throughout the year, and Homestead makes the most of them. With tart cherries in June, peaches in July, blackberries in August, and pumpkins throughout the fall, there’s something for everyone. Simply check their harvest schedule before hitting the road. And as a bonus, the market on site offers fresh seasonal produce for those who prefer to purchase instead of pick.
6. Rock Hill Orchard
28600 Ridge Rd
Mt Airy, MD 21771
Originally dairy farmers, the owners of Rock Hill Orchard purchased it in 2010 as a place to graze their herd of Guernsey’s. The added advantage came with enough acreage to establish a “Pick Your Own” business as well as a creamery and on-farm market. Since then, they have begun ventures into cheesemaking (with a certificate from the University of Vermont’s Institute of Artisanal Cheesemaking) and Ice Cream (with a degree from “Ice Cream College” at Penn State).
Everything grown on the farm is available to pick, including at least 25 apple varieties. There are also plenty of activities to choose from in the fall – all perfect for the entire family. Find your way out of the 14-acre corn maze (or smaller sunflower walk for the littlest visitors). Pick a pumpkin from the patch. Try your hand at the world-famous pumpkin cannon. Feed a calf. Take in the scenery on a hayride. The options are endless.
Individuals and couples don’t need reservations but if you are a group of three or more, you will need a reservation for apple picking, so head to their website before heading out the door.
7. Weber’s Cider Mill Farm
2526 Proctor Ln
Parkville, MD 21234
Since 1908, the Webers have been market gardeners and fruit growers. They got their start by hauling products to market in Baltimore via horse and wagon. As the city grew out to the farm, they began an on-site operation. Weber’s Cider Mill farm is the oldest continuously operating cider mill in Maryland.
The barnyard opens with the annual Johnny Appleseed festival in mid-September which includes a craft show, hayrides, gem mining, straw mazes, food tucks, live music, and so much more. Most autumn weekends look pretty similar, minus the craft show. Also on site you’ll find a farm market, bakery, hand dipped ice cream, and homemade fudge!
The PYO (pick your own) Peachberry Farm is actually located a few miles down the road and features some of the best apple picking in Maryland. Typically, four pick your own sessions are offered on the weekends. Visit their website for details on crop availability each weekend and to purchase tickets.
Reserve Your Stay for a Fall Retreat at The Hotel at UMD
Autumn excursions like apple picking and leaf peeping drives are a great way to spend a fall day in Maryland, and our convenient location makes the Hotel at University of Maryland the perfect home base for a fall retreat. Post apple-picking extravaganza you might head to one of the many wineries in the area, visit the best hidden gems in Washington, D.C., or simply explore College Park, Maryland.
Once the sun sets, you’ll probably want to kick back, relax, and warm up. A night in one of our luxuriously cozy guest rooms is a perfect way to banish the chill after a day in the brisk fall air. For a bit of extra pampering consider a hot stone massage at The Spa, or maybe head to the Lobby Bar for a perfectly crafted hot toddy before turning in for the night. However you chose to spend your stay, we can’t wait to welcome you to The Hotel at University of Maryland.