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Pick Your Own Strawberry Farms Having a Record Season

strawberry field
Nelson County Strawberry Farm is one of Virginia's "Pick Your Own" businesses. (Photo: Charles Fishburne/VPM News)

With families cooped up and restless, “Pick Your Own” strawberry patches are an increasingly popular way to get outdoors.

Visitors at Robbie Vaughan’s farm in Virginia Beach have gone from 2,500 this time last year to 15,000. Vaughn says one of his customers told him her visit was the first time she'd been out of the house in a month and a half, and "Now they’re feeling normal.”

In Henico, Steve Gallmeyer, who owns Gallmeyer Farms, says the "pickin'" is good. "The fruits are at the point where they are really going to be popping."

Considered essential businesses, pick-your-own farms have extra safety and social distancing measures. Strawberry rows are already six feet apart. Gallmeyer has his Henrico farm laid out in grids, and they’ve taped off the tables and chairs.

To keep the staff and other shoppers safe, don't linger. "You know, come out and enjoy the fresh air, enjoy being able to pick some fresh fruit, but then you gotta go," he said.

There are dozens of sites listed at, and you can find one near you with a simple zip code search. Best of all - they're all required to adhere to coronavirus safety guidelines and social distancing.

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