A couple of weeks ago a friend organised a trip to Kenyon Hall Farm. It’s a place I’ve heard of but never got round to actually visiting. It’s not too far away so the children and I packed our sunhats, suncream and a picnic and headed across to meet up with some fellow Home Ed people.
We got lucky with the weather – the previous two days had been very wet but the day we went was glorious sun – almost too hot at the height of the day! But perfect for picking fruit.
Once everyone had arrived we headed to the barn area where the lady from the farm explained to the children about the farm and the sorts of things it grows. It was pitched really well and all the children were interested and engaged. She had different vegetables to hand to show the children and explained which ones they grew at the farm and when their season was as well as how they grow, eg on vines, under the ground etc. It was really good and I even learnt a thing or too!
We then headed off to the herb garden where again there was a short talk and the children were able to smell some of the herb plants – there were some weird and wonderful combinations including chocolate mint!
We also spotted some hover flies whilst here – they are very beautiful looking insects – I like that they masquerade as a bee but are totally harmless.
Next we walked around the farm – we saw the large pumpkin patch, the broad beans and then on to the raspberries. We got to sample a lovely raspberry as well as seeing how they grow differently to blackberries (and of course the blackberry season is slightly later). We then got to see the tayberries – a hybrid cross between raspberry and blackberry.
We then headed back and got to do the children’s favourite thing – a ride in the tractor’s trailer! This took us all around the farm where we had the strawberry patch pointed out to us as well as the various other vegetables that were growing or being harvested. We also got to see the beginnings of the Maize Maze – we really must go back to do this before the summer is over.
Once we were back to the entrance we were given a punnet each and we set off to the strawberry patch to pick some strawberries. It was towards the end of the season when we went so there weren’t as many to find but Mr D was soon running off with his friends and managed to get a healthy crop of strawberries, as did Miss E. They had lots of fun finding them.
Next we headed to the raspberries and managed to get a decent selection there – I love raspberries and these were delicious. Mr D also wanted to get some blackcurrants, but when he realised how small they were and just how many he would need to pick to get a decent amount he lost interest.
We then headed to the farm shop to get a jar of tayberry jam and to pay for our fruit before heading into the playarea for a play on the old tractors.
The children had a great day and I can see us heading back to Kenyon Hall Farm in the autumn time to get a pumpkin or two. The Home Ed day was really good and my two got a lot out of it. Even H had fun testing the raspberries and being out in the fields. We have talked about the farm since and they’ve remember a lot of what they saw and were told during the talk.
More information about Kenyon Hall Farm can be found here – they update their site daily with details of the fruit available to pick.