Pie season is upon us, and nothing is better than heading out to a u-pick farm and gathering your own fruit to fill a delicious pie. Apple farms are the best to go to with the entire family, and in September and October, they are ripe for picking. Your family will love spending the day together picking apples to bring home and cook any way you’d like.
These are our favorite u-pick apple farms in the Bay Area. Make sure to call or check the website before heading out since the farms could change schedules abruptly.
Apple-A-Day Ratzlaff Ranch
- Address: 13128 Occidental Rd, Sebastopol CA
Ratzlaff Ranch is perfect for heading to and picking Gravenstein, Roman Beauties, and Golden Delicious apples. Their u-pick season starts in mid-September and goes by appointment only. A $10 reservation fee is credited toward your final purchase of apples or treats when you make your reservation and picking costs $2.50 per pound. Besides tasty apples, you can grab the popcorn, apple bread, cookies, and more from their treat area. Stay at Ratzlaff Ranch for lunch and enjoy their picnic tables, where you can drink fresh apple cider from the ranch. They’re open Monday-Wednesday, Friday, and Sunday from 9 am to 4 pm.
- Address: 3175 Sullivan Rd, Sebastopol CA
This 14-acre farm is stunning to visit during apple season and grab some goodies to take home. They have a wide variety of apples, including Fuji and Rome. Their u-pick hours are on Saturdays from 11 am to 3 pm, and you must make reservations ahead of time. A $25 fee per group is non-refundable if you can’t attend your picking. Slots fill up fast, so make sure to book well in advance.
Chileno Valley Ranch
- Address: 5105 Chileno Valley Rd, Petaluma CA
With over 20 varieties of apples to choose from, your family will have a fantastic time picking apples at Chileno Valley Ranch. Besides u-pick apples, the ranch offers farm tours, and you can take home grass-fed beef. Their treats include jams, honey, cheese, free-range eggs, and more but make sure to make reservations online. Chileno Valley Ranch is popular, and reservations for u-pick apples fill up fast.
- Address: 646 Trabing Rd, Watsonville CA
All the apples over at Clearview Orchards are organic with options like Honeycrisp and Mutsu apples. You can grab a jar of local honey, lavender goods, apple butter, and apple juice, and make sure to take home their famous apple popsicles. Their u-pick season starts September 3 and runs through the end of October. Tickets cost $5, which covers one vehicle for an hour of apple picking.
- Address: 55 Pechham Rd, Watsonville CA
Near Santa Cruz is Gizdch Ranch, which offers a variety of u-pick options. Their apples include Pippin, Fuji, and Golden Delicious, but don’t forget to stop at their pie shop. Take a freshly baked pie home or just a slice if that’s all you need. U-pick is available at weekends only from 9 am to 5 pm, with apples costing $1.94/ pound.
Live Earth Farm
- Address: 1275 Green Valley Rd, Watsonville CA
Have a great time over at Live Earth Farm with numerous u-pick options, including apples, strawberries, blackberries, and tomatoes. You get a considerable discount the more you pick, so feel free to grab as much as you need. Their current apple selection includes Fuji and Gala, but more are added throughout the season. U-pick is open on weekends, with prices being $10 per car and $1.50/ pound of apples.
Luz Del Valle
- Address: 1875 Hames Rd, Aptos CA
With over 20 varieties of apples, Luz del Valle is an excellent spot for apple picking. Their apples are known to be used for Martinelli’s apple juice and ciders, so you can’t pick them wrong when you’re here. Most of their apples are Fuji and Gala, but you can be surprised with other delicious options. Besides apples, make sure to see their Arabian horses and take a carriage ride. You can pick apples Wednesday-Saturday in October. Tickets cost $12 and include one pound of apples. Children under 12 can pick for free.
The family will have a great time visiting these u-pick apple locations and spending time outdoors gathering apples. Make sure to head to the farms’ website to schedule needed reservations and to verify they are open for the season.