For some of us that time of year when you are pulling out the flannel shirts and switching your daily coffee from iced to hot is the BEST time of year. Pumpkins! Mums! Crisp blue skies! And of course that most delightful of Autumn joys…Apples! My yearly apple picking excursion to Blackman Homestead Farm in Lockport is a highlight of every apple season and the reason there is always a year’s worth of homemade applesauce in my freezer.
Photo courtesy of Blackman Homestead Farm
A family owned farm for over 150 years, the Blackman’s have 15 varieties of apples to pick, as well as fresh juices, fresh pressed cider, and homemade fruit sauces at their farm stand, and various adorable farm animals for children (and adults) to admire. Get your wagon and your canvas apple bag, pick a likely looking stand of trees and start picking! Apples are a particularly enjoyable fruit to pick for tall people…we can reach high up into the trees and leave the low hanging fruit for the kids to enjoy! Be careful though…picking is somewhat addicting…there is always one more even rounder, riper fruit on the next branch. Before you know it you can really overdo, and hauling that full wagon back to the stand to pay can be quite a chore!
A great outdoor activity for families and friends to enjoy on a crisp fall day, Upick apples are available at many local farms in the area. These days weekends are often by appointment, so make sure you check the website and plan ahead. Most farms have stands with cider and other goodies available to buy as well.
Here are several WNY farms and orchards to visit this apple picking season!
Blackman Homestead Farms
Greg’s U-Pick Farm
9270 Lapp Rd., Clarence Center NY
Cash only, ATM on-site
Hall’s Apple Farm
6100 Ruhlmann Rd., Lockport NY
Call ahead for availability
Sanger Farms & Bakery
852 Lockport Rd., Youngstown NY
Smith’s Orchard Cider Mill
4960 Mapleton Rd., Pendleton NY