Where to pick your own pumpkins
Big 'uns, little 'uns, warty ones and pale ghostly ones. Here's Muddy's pick of the pumpkin patches for your witches and wizards to get carving.
Good gourd! Is it time to trot out my dreadful pumpkin puns and moth-eaten witch’s hat already? Seems like only yesterday I was trying to stop the kids from pronging each other with carving tools and scraping congealed pumpkin innards off the kitchen floor.
As if this year hasn’t bought enough horrors already, Halloween is nearly upon us and with it my trusty round-up of where to pick yer pumpkins. Some you have to pre-book your slot, so do check the websites before you go.
Pick your own Pumpkins, Day-pottles Lane, Exminster, Sat 24 – Sat 31 Oct
At Little Silver near Exminster, Pick your Own Pumpkins is on throughout half term and for those who can’t make daytime, there’s a Spooky Evening on Weds 28 with food and a mug of warm spiced apple juice and scary stories by the fire.
Pick your own Pumpkin Festival, Darts Farm, Topsham, Sat 24 – Sat 31 Oct
Always good for a farm-grown pumpkin, this year Darts are having their first ever Pick your own Pumpkin Festival throughout half term. No booking required and the price depends on how many you pick and the size. Do save some time to head inside for the deli and shops, including Fired Earth, the Flower Shack and Orange Tree, handy if you’re already on the lookout for Xmas pressies.
Pips Pick Your Own, Yealmpton, Sat 3 Oct – Sat 31 Oct
Pips Pick Your Own have opened already and are urging everyone to get in early this year in case the farm has to shut down over half term due to government restrictions – and they have some of the biggest pumpkins they’ve ever grown with handy wheelbarrows to collect them in (open every day 10am-5pm till Halloween). There are loos and picnic benches, as well as Ben’s Farm Shop on hand for organic supplies.
West Town Farm, Ide near Exeter, Thurs 29 – Sat 31 Oct
West Town Farm at Ide near Exeter are doing things differently this year with allocated time slots on 29-31 Oct and pre-booking which includes a free pumpkin for the littlie (£2 adults/£3.50 kids). You can also pre-book lunch and Exploding Bakery cakes (yum).
Shute Fruit, Bishopsteignton, until Sat 31 October
The bucolic Shute Fruit on the A379 coast road, has the best views for fruit-picking you could hope for, overlooking the Teignmouth estuary. Owned by jam-and-pickle-makers extraordinaire, David and Lori Reich, who have a pick your own cornucopia, including the last hurrah of the bean and courgette harvest. At the time of writing, they’re not sure when they’ll be ready for picking so do phone first on 01626 777570 or check their Picking Today web page where they list what’s ripe and ready.
Terawhiti Farm, South Milton, near Kingsbridge, Sat 10 – Sun 11 Oct
Terawhiti is open just for the weekend with big ones, small ones, warty ones and pale ghostly ones with prices from £1 (cash only), and they’re doing a hog roast. Mud likely so wear wellies and fancy dress – if you fancy.
Braunton Pumpkin Patch, Moor Lane, Braunton, Sat 24 – Sat 31 Oct
No need to book (but they do have a QR ode for track and trace) and they take cash and card. You can bring the pooch too and don’t forget those wellies.
Strawberry Fields, Lifton Farm Shop, Lifton, Sat 24 Oct – Sun 1 Nov
For the full farm shop experience (and maybe a slap-up Sunday lunch), head to the multi-award winning family-run Strawberry Fields on the Devon/Cornwall border for their annual Pumpkin Fest. There are a few changes this year, including no carving, no tractor and trailer rides, no face painting and no scheduled magic shows as before but Magic Martin is there to sprinkle fairy dust over proceedings and takeaway fare is available from the Witches Cauldron. Booking essential, £2, maximum six people per group for a 60 minute time slot.
PYO Pumpkin Festival, Thornes Farm Shop, Stockleigh Pomeroy, Crediton, Thurs 29 – Sat 31 Oct
Mid-Devoners, head to the patch at Thornes Farm Shop for three days of picking, plus any child that turns up in fancy dress is promised sweets. (Cafe will be open for food and drink.)
PS. Riverford’s popular pumpkin fest at Buckfasteigh isn’t on. (I don’t normally write about what’s not on but I guess it’s that sort of year). And if they’re are any of your family faves that should be on the list, let us know in the comment box below!