By Johnny Jackson
Southern Belle Farm opens today as one of the last remaining "u-pick" strawberry patches in the area.
Jeff Floyd and Farm Owner Jake Carter recently worked through the night to make sure their crop of strawberries would be safe from this spring's late freeze, said Ansley Glenn, marketing director for the farm.
This spring will be the first time the 200-acre farm has offered u-pick strawberries.
Last October, Carter and others with the farm planted 45,000 strawberry plants on two acres of land with the goal of providing families with an afternoon of strawberry picking.
Carter had planned to open the patch on April 15, but delayed the opening to give the plants time to recover from this season's blitz of sporadic cold and wet weather.
The patch will be open Mondays through Fridays, from 8 a.m., until 6 p.m.; Saturdays, from 8 a.m., until 8 p.m.; and Sundays from 1 to 6 p.m.
Patrons will be able to pick their own strawberries, or buy the fruit pre-picked.
"They're so fresh, and they're locally grown," Glenn said. "And it's fun for families."
Self-picked strawberries are $1.95 per pound, and pre-picked strawberries are $2.35 per pound. Picking buckets are provided at no extra charge.
The strawberry patch, located at 1658 Turner Church Road in east McDonough, will be open through mid-May, or while supplies last.
Southern Belle Farm also hosts other family-oriented activities during the summer and fall months, including a fall pumpkin patch and corn maze.
The farm, which operates as an agri-tourism farm, will begin hosting spring tours for school groups this April as well. For more information, call (770) 898-0999.
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