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Houston-area farms offer tasty fruit for lower price

Thursday, June 27, 2013

You can eat healthy and save money. All you have to do is pick some fresh fruit. But, you have to know when and where you can do it.

Take note because we want to share some great farms in our area that are perfect for picking your own fruit. It's family fun and on top of that it's a money saver.

About 50 miles north of Houston, tucked away in the outskirts of the Sam Houston National Forest, is the Pioneer Berries Farm.

"It's about halfway between Conroe and Cleveland," the farm's owner, John Harger said.

Harger inherited the farm after his dad passed away last year.

"Dad always called it his hobby, but when he retired, he worked harder," Harger said.

So he is carrying on the family tradition by allowing the public to come and pick blueberries every season. The price per pound is $2.25.

"We don't use any insecticides. It's totally organic," Harger said.

The bushes here are low enough for the kids to easily grab and help out. While some kids pick them by the handful, others enjoy them by the handful.

"Yeah, I have two ladies picking berries. I'm gonna watch them pick them and I'm going eat them too," visitor Sam Hardin said.

Experts say the secret to pick the sweetest berries here on the farm is to look for berries with a red stem because those berries tend to be the sweetest.

You pick and fill the bucket and on the way out, your harvest is weighed. For moms, it's not only a way to save on fresh produce but also a lesson for their kids.

"I think that we have been a little bit more mindful lately where our food is coming from and it's nice to show them that it just doesn't come off a grocery store shelf," farm visitor Debra Peyreau said.

The Pioneer Berries Farm is located in Montgomery County off FM 105 and Pioneer Road. Hours are from 7am-7pm Monday-Saturday and closed Sunday.

Other farms you can pick from include the Matt Family Orchard in Tomball, where this Saturday, you can pick blackberries from 8am until noon.

Price Organic Farm in Brazoria County has several varieties of fruit and vegetables ready to pick. And Moorhead's Blueberry Farm in Conroe will be open this Saturday for blueberry picking.

Farmers tell me because of a couple of late season freezes, they had an unusual season and by now almost all picked out. But you have about a week left of blueberry season.

Keeping in mind, almost all these farms accept cash only.

Find Patricia on Facebook at ABC13PatriciaLopez or on Twitter at @patricialopez13

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