I'm Cindy, an American expat living in London, writing about our family adventures and travels within the UK and abroad, with travel tips and reviews. Join us as we wander the countryside, visit local museums and attractions and travel the world - with a three-year-old son and a baby on the way!
Picking fruits and vegetables has become one of our favorite family activities during summer and autumn. It makes for a fun day out making our way through the crops, filling up baskets with delicious produce for a low price. Garsons Pick Your Own Farm in Esher, Surrey, is one of the best PYO farms near…
Picking fruits and vegetables has become one of our favorite family activities during summer and autumn. It makes for a fun day out making our way through the crops, filling up baskets with delicious produce for a low price. Garsons Pick Your Own Farm in Esher, Surrey, is one of the best PYO farms near London – and the UK’s largest, with 28 crops of fruit, vegetable and flower crops open from June to October.
Over the past three years, we’ve been visiting Garsons Pick Your Own Farm at least once during the summer to pick strawberries and again in October to pick pumpkins at the patch. In this post, I’ll be sharing more about our experiences picking a wide variety of fruits and vegetables at Garsons PYO Farm through the years.
At Garson Farm’s Esher location, in addition to the PYO Farm, you’ll find a large Garden Centre, Restaurant and a Farm Shop. There are restrooms and baby changing facilities within the Garden Centre, and a small playground near the restaurant.
Garsons PYO Farm now requires a minimum spend payment of £4 per adult (age 17 and older) at the entrance kiosk. Hold onto the receipt because that minimum spend will be refunded against any produce you pick and purchase.
You can walk around the PYO farm, but the crops are very spread out across 150 acres so I’d recommend driving to the fields. Once you’ve made the minimum spend payment, you can also leave and re-enter the PYO farm throughout the day – just show the receipt at the entrance kiosk.
The dirt road around the PYO farm is one-way, so pick up a crop map at the entrance kiosk or the garden centre to plan out which crops you’d like to stop at along the way. By most crops, there is a parking area and a kiosk with small blue punnets (that hold approximately 1 kg of produce) or large green punnets (that hold about 3 kg) which you can take free of charge. Plastic bags are also provided for vegetable picking.
On our most recent visit, there were kiosks for payment on the way out of the PYO field. Credit cards are accepted and, again, make sure to have your minimum spend receipt to hand to be refunded that amount against your purchase.
Earlier this week, we picked strawberries at a crop covered by a shade cloth. We spent a good two hours filling up three punnets worth of strawberries. Freshly picked strawberries are so delicious and absolutely worth coming out to a PYO farm to gather your own. It’s a fun experience that my son has looked forward to each year – and now his little sister is enjoying it too!
In previous years, we’ve picked strawberries in an open field and at a table-top crop like the one shown below. It changes depending on which crops are ready for picking on the day you visit, on some days you might find several strawberry crops open for picking around the fields.
Green Beans and Cherries
One of the reasons why we enjoy coming to Garsons Pick Your Own Farm is the variety. In addition to having a wide selection of produce to pick, it’s a great educational experience for kids to how different fruits and vegetables grow. Last July was a great time to visit when plenty of crops were open and we ended up picking strawberries, cherries, raspberries, and French beans.
I’m planning to go back this year to pick French beans again – they were so tasty cooked the same day, so much better than store bought ones!
Raspberries and Plums
We have also visited Garsons Pick Your Own Farm in early September. Again, there was a variety of crops to pick from, with our favorites being the raspberries and plums.
Sweetcorn and Sunflowers
During that September visit, we also picked sweetcorn and a couple of sunflowers. Little T was much more interested in the ladybugs he found on the leaves in the corn field.
Tip: Bring scissors or flower snips if you plan on picking sunflowers! And ideally a container with water to hold the cut flowers in
It’s also an annual family tradition to visit Garsons Pick Your Own Farm in October to pick our pumpkins at the patch for carving or painting. There are loads of pumpkins to choose from at the pumpkin patch and it’s a great spot for photos too. Make sure to bring your wellies as it can get muddy there!
Voted Surrey’s best farm shop, the Farm Shop at Garsons stocks high quality produce; local and regional cheese; freshly baked bread and pastries; locally-made wines, beers and spirits; free-range beef and poultry; speciality foods and artisan products from around the UK.