Larriland Farm in perfect. I said that two years ago, and the pick-your-own farm in Woodbine has only gotten better as they expand and improve.
August to October are the feast months at Larriland. We went for blackberries and peaches on Saturday, and our boxes were overflowing as we rolled home. Overflowed as in 40 pounds of peaches. Smaller boxes for the blackberries, but you can't get heaps of ripe blackberries like this anywhere.
Heaps that Mrs. HowChow has turned into blackberry sorbet and used for a blackberry-peach pie. That was the second pie. Even discounting the slices that we shared with friends, we have split more than a pie between us since Sunday.
The farm is about 30 minutes from the more-crowded part of Howard County. You can stop for a barbecue lunch before or after at Town Grill in Lisbon. Although you pick in the fields, check out Larriland's expanded store at the main parking lot. Get the dried fruit candy. Try one of the McCutcheon's brand sodas like birch beer. Or pick up some of the vegetables and fruit that you didn't pick yourself.
Last weekend, they were talking about several more weeks of peach picking, and the blackberries were still pretty thick. We also paid $7.50 for a large plastic cup, and Mrs. HowChow created a bouquet from the cutting garden. She actually created three bouquets from all the flowers that fit in her cup. You can also pick plums, potatoes, leeks, and tomatoes. Soon there will be apples, then pumpkins in October.
Take my advice about blackberries: You can't pick them based on sight. You have to pull gently on the blackest berries and only take the ones that pop off. Some super-black berries are still tart. If you have to pull the berry off the bush, then it's tart. Just move on. Get the ones that you can almost brush into your tray.
2415 Woodbine Road
Woodbine, MD 21797
NEAR: This is off I-70 west of Rte 32. Take I-70 West to Exit 73. Turn left at the end of the exit ramp. Then follow that road through a circle and then along a road of farms and new developments. Larriland is on the left, although there are some fields across the road.