Feast Your Eyes, Then Your Palate!

Colorful Rome apples at Averill Farm, Washington Depot, Connecticut, will gain size and ripen in October. (Russell Steven Powell)

THERE’S NO BETTER PLACE to enjoy the New England landscape than its apple orchards.

No two orchards are exactly alike, but many offer spectacular views in addition to ripening apples on trees bursting with fruit. The orchard’s beauty peaks during harvest.

The orchard is peaceful and quiet; away from traffic, the grass beneath the trees absorbs noise — except for the soft sound of birds fluttering among the branches. Breathe deep.

The sweet fragrance of ripening fruit fills the lungs and air. Breathe deep again.

In addition to dozens of varieties of apples, many orchards have other tree fruits like pears and peaches, plus blueberries, raspberries, and an array of vegetables.

When you enter the farm store, the aroma shifts from apples to baked goods, from pies to cider donuts, and freshly pressed cider.

You can spend an entire day at one orchard, or visit several. Either way, there is no better place to enjoy the outdoors and return home with the delicious, nutritious fruits of farmers’ labors.

Consult our Orchard Finder to learn more, and call ahead to find out what’s picking and to see if the orchard has any special rules for visiting due to the coronavirus.

Here are a few scenes from around the region, ending with a parade of apples.

Averill Farm, Washington Depot, Connecticut, has an outstanding crop of Bartlett pears available for pick-your-own this weekend. (Russell Steven Powell)
As apple season begins, Bishop’s Orchards, Guilford, Connecticut, will offer pick-your-own raspberries this weekend. (Russell Steven Powell)
Blue Hills Orchard, Wallingford, Connecticut, will be picking Ginger Golds, Paula Reds, premier Honeycrisp (above), plus peaches, nectarines, and plums. They will start on Galas early next week. (Russell Steven Powell)
Blue Jay Orchards, Bethel, Connecticut, opens for the season September 5. (Russell Steven Powell)
Carlson Orchards, Harvard, Massachusetts, has early apples like Jersey Mac, and will have peaches through September. (Russell Steven Powell)
Dwarf trees at Cold Spring Orchard, University of Massachusetts, Belchertown, Massachusetts, loaded with apples. (Russell Steven Powell)
The view from the hilltop orchard at March Farm, Bethlehem, Connecticut. They have Paula Reds and other early season apples. (Russell Steven Powell)
Quabbin Reservoir can be seen in the distance at Phoenix Fruit Farm, Belchertown, Massachusetts. Pick-your-own apples begin September 5, and there are currently Gravenstein apples in the farm store.  (Russell Steven Powell)
Pick-your-own apples at Rogers Orchards, Southington, Connecticut, will begin September 5 with Jonamacs. (Russell Steven Powell)
Windy Hill Farm, Great Barrington, Massachusetts, has a bountiful apple crop this fall. (Russell Steven Powell)
Macouns at Easy Pickin’s, Enfield, Connecticut, will ripen in late September. (Russell Steven Powell)
The pick-your-own season is off to a strong start at many orchards, including Averill Farm, Washington Depot, Connecticut. (Russell Steven Powell)
Silverman’s Farm, Easton, Connecticut, opened its pick-your-own season Wednesday with Ginger Gold. (Russell Steven Powell)

The steady play of light and shadow adds a sculptural dimension to the multi-colored apple. March Farm, Bethlehem, Connecticut. (Russell Steven Powell)
Blue Jay Orchards, Bethel, Connecticut. (Russell Steven Powell)
March Farm, Bethlehem, Connecticut. (Russell Steven Powell)
Rogers Orchards, Southington, Connecticut. (Russell Steven Powell)
Brookfield Orchards, North Brookfield, Massachusetts. (Russell Steven Powell)
Rogers Orchards, Southington, Connecticut. (Russell Steven Powell)
Jonagold apple, Butternut Farm, Farmington, New Hampshire,. (Russell Steven Powell)