Nothing says “Sonoma County” more than sweet, tart and delicious Gravenstein apples in late July. But as the Gravensteins wane and September looms, our thoughts turn back to apple picking once more—the big, red, juicy types just in time for back-to-school!
We live in a special spot in the world with microclimates just perfect for growing apples and nothing screams “fall is coming” faster than the sound of a crunchy apple. It’s time to get in the spirit of fall and to make reservations at favorite local farms for apple-picking.
So grab the kids, grandkids, neighbors and friends for a good-old fashioned morning in an apple orchard. Then, imagine the tasty delights you can prepare as you enjoy the “fruits” of your labors!
SONOMA COUNTY APPLE FARMS
Earthseed Farm, Sebastopol: Apples, Blackberries, Raspberries, Plums, Pluots
You will marvel at this 14-acre solar-powered organic farm and orchard in Sebastopol which is operated in accordance with Afro Indigenous permaculture principles. Fruit and berry pickers are welcome by appointment on select Saturdays from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. (check upcoming u-pick dates on the farm’s website). 3175 Sullivan Road, Sebastopol, 707-829-0617.
Chileno Valley Ranch, Petaluma: Apples
Four hundred apple trees provide a stunning backdrop for fruit harvesters visiting this farm. Reservations begin August 15 for September apple-picking dates. Guests are required to wear masks and practice social distancing. Additional items for purchase include Honey, lavender and baked goods. 5105 Chileno Valley Road, Petaluma, 707-765-6664, mikeandsallygalebeefranch.com
Apple-A-Day Ratzlaff Ranch, Sebastopol: Golden Delicious and Roman Beauties
We’ve all heard the saying, “An apple a day keeps the doctor away.” This family-run farm in Sebastopol takes the old adage a step further by growing apples and pears. U-pick of Golden Delicious and Roman Beauties is offered in September and October and Gravensteins are available for purchase when in season (from late July). Visit website to check on availability. 13128 Occidental Road, Sebastopol, 707-823-0538, appleadayranch.com
Happy Apples Farm, Healdsburg: Apples
This small organic family farm grows zinfandel and more than 20 different types of apples just “ripe for the pickin!” Open for u-pick apples including Red Gravenstein, Surprise, Sparkle, Pink Permains, Mac Mystery and more! Picking is by appointment from August 15 to October 30. 8605 Westside Road, Healdsburg, 707-331-9506.
Casari Ranch, Sonoma Coast: Apples
If the thought of combining apple picking with a visit to the coast appeals to you, we’ve got you covered! This unique coastal ranch specializes in guided equine experiences, organic wool bedding and home goods and also offers farm retreats, tours and u-pick apple picking by appointment in their heirloom apple orchard. Their u-pick will open first week of September and will be open 11 a.m. to 4 p.m by appointment. Email firstname.lastname@example.org to make a reservation and for directions.
LOOKING FOR MORE APPLE FUN?
If you are hoping to make the event special for some of the children in your group, “Secrets of the Apple Tree” is a delightful book that shares unusual creatures in the habitat when the book is held up to light. Check it out here.
Looking for some fun, easy apple recipes to enjoy after your afternoon of apple picking? Check out 25 great apple recipes ranging from good, old-fashioned applesauce to muffins to pies to savory soups!
As your Sonoma County realtor, I invite you to enjoy the approach of fall in the most beautiful place in the world.