It's Strawberry Season! Let's go picking!

Every year my mother-in-law takes my daughter strawberry picking. It's a yearly tradition for them. My mother-in-law loves to pick multiple baskets of fresh, local strawberries and make jam, muffins and strawberry shortcakes with them. She even freezes them by the pound and uses them throughout the winter months for smoothies. Ottawa is lucky to have many nearby strawberry farms to both purchase and pick delicious local strawberries from.

local strawberries

Apparently this year the crop was delayed due to the brief cold snap and lack of rain, but according to my mother-in-law this coming week should be the peak time to grab local strawberries at their best! If you’re unsure how good the crop is, feel free to contact the farm in question – they know best!

Here is a list of some tried and true Ottawa strawberry farms with details as to whether or not they allow "pick your own" (of course this could change as the crop diminishes, so again, always best to check with the farm: 

Strawberry Picking1

Ottawa Strawberry Farms: 

Dekok Family Berry Farm
1070 March Rd, 
Kanata, Ontario
(613) 59-BERRY (613-592-3779)
http://www.dekokberryfarm.com/
Can you pick your own? Yes

Miller’s Berry Farm
6158 Rideau Valley Drive
Ottawa, Ontario
613-692-2380

http://www.millersfarmandmarket.ca/
Can you pick your own? Yes

Proulx Berry Farm
1865 O'Toole Rd. 
Cumberland (Ottawa), ON K4C 1N2
613-833-2417
http://proulxberryfarm.com/
Can you pick your own: Yes

Purple Cow Strawberry Farm
1439 Sale Barn Road
Greely, Ontario
613-821-1345
Can you pick your own? Yes

Richmond Nursery Strawberry Farm
5740 Old Richmond Road
Richmond, ON
613-838-2282
http://www.richmondnursery.com/
Can you pick your own? Yes!

Rideau Pines Farm
5714 Fourth Line Rd
North Gower ON
(613) 489-3601
http://www.rideaupinesfarm.com/about.html
Can you pick your own? Yes

Shouldice Berry Farm
Three locations in Bells Corners, Barrhaven and Nepean
http://www.shouldicefarm.com/pick-your-own-strawberries.html
Can you pick your own? Yes!

What you need to know about strawberry picking

child picking strawberries

·      If you have a basket from previous years bring it with you, otherwise a new one will cost you a few cents (it can even be from another strawberry farm).

·      Most farms discourage eating too many berries while picking (especially when that year’s harvest isn’t at its best), so when going with small children make sure they have eaten well and understand the rules before heading to the strawberry patch.

·      Dress for the weather! There isn’t a lot of shade at most strawberry patches so don’t forget your hat, sunscreen and a bottle of water.

·       Local strawberries need to be cooled as soon as possible (so try not to leave them in a hot car all day or they may turn to mush) and plan on washing and consuming them within three to four days – maybe less if the weather is hot!

eating a strawberry

My favourite strawberry recipe

When I think of local strawberries I also think of rhubarb! Every June and July I bake this tried and true Strawberry-Rhubarb Cobbler Cake recipe from Dinner with Julie. It makes a large pan so it’s great for summer BBQs! I guarantee it will become a family favourite! Click here to get the recipe!

Did we miss a great Ottawa strawberry farm? Let us know in the comments below and we'll add it to the list!