Having grown up in a nearby village,and Callum having worked there many years ago, Roundstone Pick Your Own is an important part of what Worthing means to us as a family.
I have several memories as a child spent walking the fields, spying for the biggest, juiciest loganberries (they were my favourite) and stuffing myself full to bursting. The most recent time I had been, if i’m not including the car boot sale, must’ve been when I was at college. Myself and a boyfriend at the time had decided we wanted to go pick a Pumpkin. At this point, not only was it too late in the year for everything else, but it seemed even all the pumpkins had gone!
It only seems fair then, that it was time I introduced Ophelia to this wonderful place, not only am I all about supporting local businesses, but i’m all about teaching children about nature and where their food comes from.
Our recent visit nearly didn’t happen, looking at the weather report it didn’t look like the rain would subside and i was sure that the fields would be mud. In the end, the rain had been minimal and it in fact turns out the fields were dry, so off we went.
After picking our transportation methods (punnets, bags and baskets) we set off on a bumpy journey on the tractor Ophelia’s Daddy had once driven (probably just as bumpily!).
First stop, broad beans!
Luckily, as it’s quite eary in the season, and the sun was not shining, we were one of the few people there, but a top tip is to definetly start with the food the kids are less interested in eating, that way their interest increases rather than peters out.
Ophelia and her cousin loved the freedom of running between the large plants, a magical place when you are small.
Eithne was straight in there, nibbling on a broad bean straight off the plant, she took a while to decide it was not all that tasty.
We then walked down to the strawberry fields, they have two fields, one that are ready to pick and the other which are still early growing. And boy, were those strawberries ready, those snippets of deep ruby red catching your eye whereever you turned- “there’s another one to pick, and another…”
Ophelia surprised us all by being chief picker and packer for the first few minutes of our arrival, without a sample in sight. That quickly changed, and soon the cousins had taken up their station in the straw, one picking the prime produce straight from the plant, the other from the punnets.
I carried on picking the fruit, with no real difficulty finding juicy strawberries but an enjoyment found in the quiet, therapeautic nature of the task. Surrounded by quiet and stillness except for the distant salivating noise from the children. It began to rain so we ducked into cover and decided now was the time to sample the tea rooms.
The tea rooms are child friendly with a few high chairs and child portions, a comfortable space with local crafts for sale. They were really acommodating for us too, bringing over our drinks and making gluten free food even though it wasn’t on the menu.
There is also a farm shop on the premises, which is very reasonably priced, unfortunately our helpers were pooped by this point, but we will be returning soon to pick the things we missed!
A very nice day out for all the family 🙂