U-Pick Update November 2020

We are really looking forward to next year and a return to more normal times.  Blossom season typically runs from mid-May to early June with ripe fruit ready to pick towards the end of July (which is of course very weather dependant). We will start posting photos towards the beginning of blossom season. Can’t wait….

As a result of the Covid-19 pandemic, we have had to change how we operate our u-pick for this coming season.  We are not able to re-use our picking containers like we have in the past.  New picking pails will be made available for purchase for $2.00, or you can bring your own containers.  We will still have plastic bags to put your berries into should you with to pick multiple pails.  There will also be restrictions on the number of customers allowed in our store any any time, but we will have all these details at the farm. We thank you for your understanding.

We are sorry to inform all of our loyal customers and friends that we will not be opening our U-pick this summer.  Back on Saturday, June 13, 2020 there was a bad hail storm that hit Calgary, Airdrie and parts of Rocky View County.  That same storm also managed to hit our farm too.  Our entire orchard took quite a beating and our U-pick area was particularly hard hit.  So, we’re afraid that there isn’t much left to pick.  The good news is that other areas of our orchard were not as badly damaged so we will hopefully have some fresh fruit to bring to market in early August.  Given all that has happened this year with Covid-19 and everything else, this outcome was definitely not welcome news for us.  We do appreciate your continued support of our farm at farmers markets and we hope to see you at our farm next year.  Thank you so much for your understanding.

U-Pick Update November 2020


We are really looking forward to next year and a return to more normal times.  Blossom season typically runs from mid-May to early June with ripe fruit ready to pick towards the end of July (which is of course very weather dependant). We will start posting photos towards the beginning of blossom season. Can’t wait….

As a result of the Covid-19 pandemic, we have had to change how we operate our u-pick for this coming season.  We are not able to re-use our picking containers like we have in the past.  New picking pails will be made available for purchase for $2.00, or you can bring your own containers.  We will still have plastic bags to put your berries into should you with to pick multiple pails.  There will also be restrictions on the number of customers allowed in our store any any time, but we will have all these details at the farm. We thank you for your understanding.

We are sorry to inform all of our loyal customers and friends that we will not be opening our U-pick this summer.  Back on Saturday, June 13, 2020 there was a bad hail storm that hit Calgary, Airdrie and parts of Rocky View County.  That same storm also managed to hit our farm too.  Our entire orchard took quite a beating and our U-pick area was particularly hard hit.  So, we’re afraid that there isn’t much left to pick.  The good news is that other areas of our orchard were not as badly damaged so we will hopefully have some fresh fruit to bring to market in early August.  Given all that has happened this year with Covid-19 and everything else, this outcome was definitely not welcome news for us.  We do appreciate your continued support of our farm at farmers markets and we hope to see you at our farm next year.  Thank you so much for your understanding.

Pick Your Own Fruit

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A sunshine drenched day spent in our U-pick orchard at Solstice Berry Farm offers everyone a one-of-a kind experience that won’t be forgotten! Whether you are looking for a quiet escape, interested in starting a new family tradition, searching for the most delicious berries, or seeking out the best photos, Solstice Berry Farm is the place for you!

You can enjoy a day on the farm, drenched in sunshine, picking our bountiful berries! Our berry picking season is dependent on weather and supply, so give us a call, check our website or follow us on Facebook/Instagram for updates before you plan to come out to get the latest information about berry availability and field conditions.

Plan Your Visit

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    Wear a hat, a pair of comfortable walking shoes and bring a light jacket along in case it cools off.  Don’t forget sunscreen, bug spray and a water bottle! The fields can get very hot and there is limited shade.

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    We have new 4L ice cream pails available for purchase for $2.00 each, however you are welcome to bring your own picking containers if you wish.

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    Pro Tip:  Bring a belt or a piece of rope that you can fasten around your waist to loop the pail handle through.  That way you can pick with both hands and pick much faster.

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    Don’t forget to bring a picnic lunch!  We do sell a small assortment of water, soft drinks and ice cream treats if you forget.

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    For the safety of our staff and customers, we will close the u-pick orchard if lightning is present.

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    Do NOT bring your pets to the farm. No animals are permitted in the orchard as per Alberta Health regulations.

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    The smoking of tobacco/cannabis or the consumption of alcohol is NOT permitted on the farm at any time.

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    Before you head out,  get up to the minute weather conditions at the farm from our on-farm weather station.  Just click on a link on our home page for the latest conditions, or click here.

Picking Guidelines & Etiquette

Photo Credit: Charity Quick
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    Pick the ripe berries which are dark purple in color or ones that have some red in them. Avoid the ones that are bright red or green.  Also, keep in mind that size does not determine taste.  The small ripe ones taste just as good, if not better, than larger ones.

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    Please pay for what you pick. We would appreciate it if you kept your sampling of berries to a minimum before you pay.

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    Parents: Please supervise your children.

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    When you arrive at the farm, please check in with our staff at the store first.  They will direct you to the best picking locations in the orchard.  If you brought your own containers to use, we will weigh them.  If not, we have new ones for purchase.  The weight of the containers will be deducted from the total weight of your berries upon check out.

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    Wash your hands at our store building before and after picking, especially following a visit to the washroom. This is a small and simple way to protect your fruit from contamination. 

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    There is no picking allowed outside the bounds of the designated u-pick orchard.  Upon arrival our staff will indicate the area in which you are allowed to pick in.  The u-pick orchard is 10 acres in size so you will have no trouble finding a great spot with lots of ripe berries away from other guests if desired.

Photo Credit Charity Quick

Picking Advice

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    As soon as you get home, put your berries in the refrigerator.  You can’t leave them in the garage overnight.  Fresh saskatoon berries are more perishable than those imported berries, because they are picked fresh and not green.  There also aren’t any added preservatives for freshness added.  The sooner you process them, the better the flavour!

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    It’s best to pick in the morning, when it’s cooler and there is less heat in the berries themselves.  The cooler the berries are, the longer they will stay fresh and flavour and taste are better preserved. You can take them home and process them in the afternoon.

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    If you are planning on picking more than one container of saskatoons, feel free to come back to the store and we will transfer your berries from your picking container into a food grade plastic bag and place it in our cooler to remove the field heat and preserve the freshness of your berries.  Do this as much as you like.  We’ll collect all of your bags from the cooler when you are ready to pay and go home.

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    Should you bring the kids?

    That depends on how many berries you plan to pick and how old your kids are.  If you’re a family on an outing, and you only want to pick enough berries for dessert, of course you can bring your children into the fields.  If you need 50 pounds or more for a years’ supply of preserves or smoothies…probably not a good idea – unless your kids are old enough to help!  Also, remember it gets very hot in the orchard, so please remember to pack hats and sunscreen.

    We have water and food for purchase in the on farm store.

    Please remember, if you do bring your kids, that berries are very tempting to eat.  Please remember our fields are like grocery shelves, and all berries must be paid for before eating.

    If you do bring your children, please keep them with you in the row you are in.

Helpful Hints & Freezing Tips for Berries

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    Only wash your berries when you are ready to use them. Sort them quickly, removing any leaves or stems. Process or freeze your berries the same day you pick them for maximum flavour & quality. Berries are perishable and lose their quality quickly. Never soak your berries in water.  For best results, rinse lightly and drain in a colander. Let dry on paper towel or absorbent tea towels.

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    Spread your berries on a cookie sheet after they have been cleaned and allowed to dry. Place sheets in freezer. When the berries are frozen, place them in a plastic freezer bag or rigid plastic container. Mark with a date, and pop back in the freezer. Then you’ll be able to enjoy them whenever you want!

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    Properly prepared and frozen saskatoons can last a very long time in the freezer. Because of the thicker skin on the saskatoon berry, they do  not freezer burn very easily. Saskatoons can easily last 3 or 4 years or longer in frozen storage and will taste the same as ones that have only been frozen for a month or two.

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