Bookings now closed for long weekend - see more infor here:https://fordsfarm.com.au/coronavirus-instructions/
Build up your immunity with sweet mandarins
The sudden drop in temperatures shows that winter is here and this means delicious mandarins and citrus fruit are ready for the picking. Fords Farm will open to the public the weekend of 6 and 7 June 2020from 9am to 4pm every weekend until all the fruit has gone.
There are new conditions of entry due to COVID19. You must make a booking online as Fords Farm is limited to the number of cars on the property at the one time. You will need to go the Fords Farm website and click on the calendar and complete details and pay a booking fee per car of $6 (which includes up to 6 people) and you will receive an email confirmation which will need to show at the farm gate before you are allowed entry.
The cost of the paying for what you pick fruit is $15 per bucket, where you can put all the different fruit into one bucket except for cumquats.
Health Regulations require you to follow the rules of social distancing with only 2 adults per car (and your children) and only four people in the shed at any time. These rules are changing daily.
You will need to show your booking confirmation You will need your own disposable gloves to wear while picking. Hand sanitiser for your own use. Your own scissors/or shears to cut the fruit off the trees. Your own bags to take the fruit home.
If you are unwell please do not come to the farm, you will be refused entry, remain 1.5m from other people and only pick where indicated by the staff.
You are required to leave the property as soon as you have obtained and paid for your fruit and you will not be able to picnic on the property this year. Please note for safety, there are only have 4 toilets this year. There are hand washing facilities available.
There is also a Click & Collect service offered this year. Simply place an order, pay online and collect from Fords Farm the following day or by appointment.
Getting taller to pick the sweet mandarins higher up
We wandered through the fruit-laden trees, bright orange dots amongst the dark green foliage. The kids ran ahead, buckets in hand on the hunt for the sweetest and largest mandarins they could find. Not much sampling occurred as it somehow turned into a race to see who could fill their buckets first before handing them over to their parents to carry back.
This year, we found a sweet spot where we picked the sweetest Satsumas mandarins. The Satsuma mandarin is a seedless variety that is easy to peel and full of sweet juice. There was an abundance of Imperial mandarins and the kids gave a thumbs up for both varieties.
Orange dotted trees
Tahitian limes, kaffir limes and lemons are available for the picking at the opening weekend. Hickson mandarins, known for their bright orange and easy to peel skins, as well as the Valencia oranges located at the far side of the farm will also be ripe for the picking. Cumquats will be able to be picked in mid-July are yet to ripen over the coming weeks.
Ford's Farm is located near Wiseman's Ferry, an easy hour and fifteen minutes drive northwest from the hustle and bustle of Sydney CBD.
There is a selection of the farm's homemade jams (mandarin and whisky, orange and brandy), honey, and chutneys on offer, too. Or have a go at making your own mandarin marmalade with your bucket loads of mandarins.
Council has provided signage to state that Laughtondale Gully Road is now closed as the road is dangerous and difficult to navigate.
Travel on Old Northern Road all the way into Wisemans Ferry and when you see the township there is a road on your right (Singleton Road). Simply follow the big yellow signs all the way past Watkins Farm to the end of the road to Fords Farm.
Prices for Pick your own.
Due to COVID19, it is set at $15 a bucket, with the exception of cumquats.