P-p-p-pick up a pumpkin!
C'mon, it's time to prep for Halloween! Make the kids put the legwork in at one of these local farms and pumpkin patches before they can start carving. Bonus brownie points for zero food miles.
Where to go in Somerset and Dorset for the pick of the crop.
Thurloxton Farm, Thurloxton, between Taunton and Bridgwater
Pick your pumpkins and head up to the carving barn to create a Halloween masterpiece (all tools supplied). Plus a spooky walk, activities and games including a ‘Hit the Witch’ giant apple catapult. Tickets £12.50 which includes the pumpkin and activities; parents, grandparents, carers go free. Open from Weds 20 – Sun 31 Oct.
Pumpkins at The Watercress Company, Knap Farm, Owermoigne, near Dorchester
Assorted varieties of pumpkin – Polar Bear whites, Crown Prince blues, Gold Medal and Japanese squash – with alpaca rides, cider and some cute lambs. Ticket £5 (includes pumpkin); book to reserve a slot. Open 8am – 5pm, Tues 26 – Thurs 28 & Sat 30 Oct.
Farrington’s, Farrington Gurney, near Bristol
Around 100,000 pumpkins of all varieties ready for picking on a 12-acre patch, from the classic orange pumpkin to white ‘Ghost’ and ‘Knucklehead’ knobbly pumpkins. Get arty in the carving marquee, toast marshmallows in the Witches Wood and ride on a tractor. Fish ‘n’ chips, snacks and other nosh. Tickets £2.50 (under 2s free). Open from 10am – 4pm, Thurs 21 – Sun 31 Oct.
Frogmary Green Farm, South Petherton
Free entry to the pumpkin patch; you only pay for the pumpkins you pick. Delicious ciabattas, pizza, cake and more from the Muddy Awards finalist Field & Farm cafe and pretty gardens around a lake. Pick ’em from 9am to 4pm, Sat 23 & Sun 24, Weds 27 – Sun 31 Oct.
Bincombe Bumps Pumpkins, West Farm, Bincombe, near Dorchester
Pumpkin picking/Halloween combo with pumpkin patch, haunted house and trick or treat. On the menu: cider affogato, marshmallow toasting or just coffee and cake. Free to enter. Open 10am – 4pm, Sat 23 – Sat 30 Oct.
Sopley Farm, Sopley, near Christchurch
At this time of year the PYO farm’s fields are full of pumpkins. Just rock up. Free. Open every day from 10am – 5pm.
Dorset Country Pumpkins, Longclose Farm, Milton Abbas, near Blandford Forum
Farming family the Millers grow pumpkins of all varieties from seed and without using herbicides or pesticides. With straw bale displays (cameras at the ready), farm animals, hot food and drinks from the Dorset Lamb and a craft Fair (Sat 23 & Sun 24). Free entry. Open 10am – 4pm, Sat 23 – Sun 31 Oct.
The Picking Patch, Newton Farm, Newton St Loe, near Bath
Get lost in a Halloween maze, choose your pumpkin (they’ve got thousands) and discover the arts and crafts of pumpkinology. Refreshments – burgers, bacon rolls, warm doughnuts and candy floss– from Newton Farm Food farm shop. Entry and parking free, with donations in aid of Great Ormond Street. No booking required. From 9.30am – 4pm, Fri 22 – Sun 31 Oct.
Palette and Pasture, Pyle Farm, Trudoxhill, near Frome
Pick as many pumpkins as you like in two hours – they’ll lend you a wheelbarrow – and book a professional photo shoot while you’re at it. Drinks, waffles, sausage rolls, pasties as well as ice cream made from milk from their own cows from the Ice Cream Parlour. Once you’ve done with the pumpkins, kids can feed goats and sheep and play on pedal tractors and mini diggers. The pumpkin patch is open every day from Thurs 21 to Sun 31 Oct. Tickets £3.50. You must pre-book.
Puxton Park, Hewish, near Bristol
The fields are alive with the sight of orange pumpkins – thousands and thousands of ’em. Pick, paint, then have fun in the rest of the Park. Free admission to the pumpkins with general park admission. From Sat 23 to Sun 31 October.
Avon Valley Wildlife & Adventure Park, Keynesham
Pumpkins by day and by night! Pick from the patch or choose from the event area – there’s an £800 necklace hidden in one of them. Play pumpkin paintball and pumpkin slingshot, fire a pumpkin cannon, fairground rides, bar, fire eaters and a festival vibe. Tickets £4. Open every day from 10am – 4pm, until Sun 31 Oct. Pumpkin Patch Nights (selected dates).