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U-Pick Flowers: Build a Bouquet at East Durham Farms

U-Pick Flowers: Build a Bouquet at East Durham Farms

 Pick your own flowers in the Catskills

If you want the freshest flowers, you've got to pick them yourself. And if you want to cut your own bouquet at one of the most idyllic places in the Catskills, you've got to head over to East Durham Farms. The flowers are bright and beautiful, a sizable bouquet only costs $8, and our flowers were still perky a week and a half after picking them. The farm provides the clippers and a 10-inch rope to measure the circumference of your bouquet. That's big enough to fill a mason jar (and you might want to bring one to keep the flowers in water your way home). It's definitely enough flowers to arrange loosely in larger vase.

 Ageratum patch at East Durham Farms

Cutting stems of lavender-blue ageratum under cerulean skies, among the butterflies and bees, I remembered a place called Blossom Farm that I visited as a kid. It was a pick-your-own flower farm that was probably open in the 90s, maybe in Greenville, and the owner may have been French? Does this ring a bell for any local readers? Anyway, I have such great memories of picking flowers there, and now I have a new reason to be completely obsessed with East Durham Farms.

The zinnias, palm-sized fireballs of color, are lined up in a rainbow of hues. I recommend driving here directly from a concrete-colored city, so you can step out of your car and feel like Dorothy when she enters the land of Oz, stepping out of a black-and-white movie and into a technicolor world.

 Zinnia field at East Durham Farms

The snapdragons are tall and luscious, in butter yellow, creamy white, and candy pink.

The sharp garden shears aren't kid-friendly, but the bouquet-building process is a great way to entertain little ones. My 6-year-old son was more interested in looking at the farm animals, but my 3-year-old daughter loved choosing the flowers. After 10 busy, activity-filled days in the Catskills, she told me that picking flowers at East Durham Farms was her favorite part of the whole vacation.

It was a vacation highlight for me, too, and it's also a major bargain. I still can't believe that $8 bought us a walk through a field of flowers, a priceless memory with my daughter, and a gorgeous bouquet that brightened our dining room for our entire trip.

East Durham Farms is located at 175 Brown Road. They're generally open on from 10am to 6pm on Saturdays, Sundays and Mondays, and someone is often around during the week. It's always a good idea to give them a ring before you visit. For more info, check their Facebook page and website.

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