Guide expérience
© Labonté de la pomme - Verger - Miellerie & Cabane à pommes

Pick-Your-Own — The Classics and More

PYO Classics

The start of summer is a time of celebration in Quebec. The snow is long gone, the sun warms our faces and we can finally start to enjoy the bounty of the land. And almost nothing gets people more excited about fresh produce than a Pick-Your-Own (PYO) farm! From berries to Christmas trees, PYO farms are open right through the summer and fall. 🫐

Whether your goal is meeting local farmers, enjoying a fantastic family day out in the countryside, or savouring fresh produce at its peak, U-Pick experiences are fun for all. With shrinkflation plaguing the shelves, there’s never been a better time to save by buying direct — not to mention you’ll be doing your bit to save the planet by saving on packaging!🍓

Credit : Ferme Marineau

It’s true: Quebec’s countryside is undeniably photogenic, but if you want to be comfortable while playing

fruit-picker-for-the-day, dress for the activity: protect yourself from the sun (sun screen, hat) and don’t forget to bring plenty of water to stay hydrated! 😎

Most farms will give you containers for your harvest when you arrive, but if you’re planning on splitting your bounty with friends at the end of the day, better to bring some with you, too. You should plan to have cash on you, not all farms can accept card payments. Most farms also have more bags and baskets available to buy out in the fields if you end up picking more than planned. 🛍️🧺

PYO farms have become increasingly popular in the last decade. Many farms have even set up spaces where you can picnic, some even sell food on-site!!😋

Quebec Berries, The Fruit That’s Always Trending

First on the agenda: berries. Strawberry production starts in May, but (depending on the weather) U-Pick strawberry farms generally open to the public around the summer solstice. Quebec farms grow 13 strawberry varieties which all have different strengths, for example Veestar makes great jam and Honeoye has a fantastic freezing capacity. In fact, PYO farms are an opportunity to try varieties that you don’t often see at the grocery store (where Jewel and Seascape rule the show).🍓

With a shorter growing season than strawberries, U-Pick raspberry and blueberry farms are usually open from early July to the end of August. Again, this is a great opportunity to try and compare different varieties. 🫐

Whichever berry you prefer, make sure you pick all the fruit from the bush before moving on to the next, so the farmers don’t suffer any crop loss. And most importantly, make sure you really get stuck in there, often the juiciest, tastiest berries are hiding under leaves!😋

U-Picks You Haven’t Heard of (Yet)

Sea Buckthorn Berries

Starting in early August, the fields of Ferme les Petites Écorces (in Pointe Fortune, Montérégie) come ablaze with orange fruit. Sea buckthorn berries are ready to pick! Ferme les Petites Écorces grows seven varieties that can be picked all through the month of August. A very hardy shrub that grows in northern climates, sea buckthorn berries have an exotic mango and passion fruit-like flavour. 🥭

Credit : Ferme Les Petites Écores

Hot Peppers

Spice up the last weeks of summer and visit Montérégie’s Potager Mont-Rouge Halte Gourmande, where you can pick hot peppers throughout September. Dried, preserved in oil or frozen, peppers keep for months so you can add some spice to your cooking all winter long! You can also pick hot peppers at the Ferme Vaillancourt in Laval, where you can bulk out your vegetable harvest with PYO eggplant, tomatoes and herbs. 🌶 🍆🍅

Credit : Le Potager Mont-Rouge Halte Gourmande

Table Grapes

98% of all the table grapes consumed in Quebec are grown outside of the province, yet Quebec is home to many grape growers. Unlike the grapes you can buy at the grocery store (which are selected for how well they hold up in transportation), Quebec’s delicious homegrown table grapes taste like they are from another dimension! Raisins Bio Vital, a PYO farm in St-Antoine-de-Tilly, cultivates five varieties of table grape, which can be picked from mid-September. 🍇

Credit : Raisins Bio Vital


Cap Santé’s L’Arc-en-ciel du Paradis is a pick-your-own paradise! Beyond the classic berries, this farm also grows sweetcorn which can be picked from mid-August to mid-September. To enjoy the sweet, juicy corn at its best, farmers recommend eating within 24 hours of harvesting … better get the BBQ fired up!🌽

Crédit : L’Arc-en-ciel du Paradis


Picking apples is practically an autumn rite of passage. But did you know you can also pick pears in Quebec? From mid-August, Oka’s Labonté de la pomme opens up its pear orchard to the public where they can harvest six varieties. Verger Kessler in Farnham also offers pear picking, usually in September. 🍎🍐

Credit : Le Verger Kessler


Labonté de la Pomme also grows five varieties of morello cherry: Carmen Jewel, Cupid, Crimson Passion, Juliette and Romeo, which comes highly recommended for its fresh and juicy flavour. Verger Champêtre in Granby is another U-Pick cherry farm with a reputation for its tart morello cherries. Quebec’s cherries are ideal for cooking and eating fresh (if you like a tart cherry!) 🍒

Credit : Labonté de la pomme – Verger – Miellerie & Cabane à pommes

Christmas Trees

Trimming the tree… Is there anything that gets you more in the holiday spirit? You can extend that feeling by cutting down your own tree at several farms across the province. Most farms (including Ferme Quinn in Notre-Dame-de-l’Île-Perrot and Verger Champêtre in Granby) open in mid-November. You’ll be given a saw and sled to transport it … all you need to remember is a thermos for your hot coco!🌲

Credit : E. Rosenbaum – La Ferme Quinn

Consultez notre section Répertoire pour obtenir encore plus de bonnes adresses!


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