|Planning time||Week of|
: College students rarely get significant contact with the food they eat. Going on a fruit or vegetable picking gives you a great excuse to get off campus and provides a fun and cheap social event.
Planning timeframe: Each crop is seasonal, but there is something tasty popping out of the ground all year round. It's as simple as looking for the next harvest, something you can literally plan the week before.
Coordinating: All you need to go is round up members who are interested in coming, and finding carpools to get everyone there.
Material requirements: In terms of the picking itself, you should bring your own containers - some farms have their own, but some charge for the privilege. Otherwise, you'll want to plan as if this were a regular day trip; come prepared with water, hand towels, lunch and snacks. Pickers should wear old, comfortable clothing, with protection from the sun in summer and extra layers in cold weather. Individually, have cash on hand for the farm's bakery or store.
- If you want a particular fruit or vegetable, look and find out what its season is. Then wait for it. If you're less picky, find out which one you're in now. Pick Your Own is a great resource to look up what's growing in your area.
- Call ahead to the farm to see that they can accommodate you, and that the fruit you want will be available. Conditions change quickly!
- Organize carpools to get there.
- Get an idea of how much of the crop you will need to make a desired food.
- When you get there, look for the farm's rules - particularly whether you will be charged by weight, volume, or count. If you don't know how to identify ripe fruit, ask!
- After you get back, clean your produce. If you don't make food immediately, find out how to preserve your loot here.
- This can make a great prelude to a bake sale or group dinner!
Submitted by JonSussman on Mon, 06/22/2009 - 02:35