by Rachael Bender, special to Edible DC Fall is here, and we’re welcoming it with open arms, boots and sweaters as we get ready to hike through falling autumn leaves. The cool, crisp air blowing through the red and orange hues of fall tell us to enjoy the last days of outdoor fun before winter clobbers us with cold and frost.
While taking a brisk stroll through the city can be invigorating, sometimes you need more to fulfill that back-to-nature desire. Even if you can’t get out to farm country in surrounding Maryland and Virginia, there’s another way to see those adorable animals and pumpkin patches from the comfort of your own phone through Instagram.
So cozy up in a big sweater with a cup on hot cider on your couch and check out these Instagram accounts from local farms, where you can follow the farm-to-phone movement throughout this season and beyond.
@ButlersOrchard is a 63-year-old pick-your-own farm in Germantown, MD featuring apples, pumpkins, and hayrides this time of year, as well as the famous Pumpkin Chunkin. Their Instagram offers a beautiful array of photos of seasonal foliage, corn mazes at sunset, a mouth-watering array of fruits and vegetables, and, as December approaches, snow-covered Christmas trees just waiting to be cut.
@ArcadiaFood is a non-profit organization located on the Woodlawn Estate in Alexandria, VA; they manage Arcadia Farm, a Mobile Market that delivers fresh food to underserved local communities; the Food Hub, which is working to get local and healthy food into school meals; and a Veteran Farmer program training military veterans in farming techniques (you can learn more about that in the next issue of Edible DC, coming out in mid-November). Their photos showcase their amazing programs and events in action in communities across the area — truly inspiring.
@RocklandsFarm Winery & Market offers meats, fruits, veggies and wine in the Agricultural Reserve of Montgomery County. The Glenn family prides itself on using a holistic agriculture strategy that encompasses everything from grass-fed to free range, organic to pasture-based, with darling photos of piggies, kiddies, and chickies enjoying life on the farm.
Westmoreland Berry Farm
@WestmorelandBerryFarm sits along the Rappahannock River in Oak Grove, Virginia on farmlands that were once visited by Captain John Smith in 1608. This pick-your-own farm also has it all, including several types of berries, peaches, cherries, apples and pumpkins, a goat petting area and goat walk, and a country store with locally-made honey and house made jam and preserves. Follow them on Instagram to keep up with what’s in season in case you’re ready to plan a daytrip.
Heritage Hollow Farms
@HeritageHollowFarms serves up grassfed beef and lamb, as well as pastured pork at the base of Shenandoah National Park in Rappahannock County, VA. Follow along on Instagram with owners Mike and Molly Peterson — he’s a trained chef and former butcher at the Inn at Little Washington, while she’s a professional photographer with an eye for capturing the true beauty of farm life, a winning combination for a virtual visit.
Tree and Leaf Farm – Unionville, VA
@TreeandLeafFarm has 10 acres of vegetables, herbs and flowers grown on a 50-acre farm in Unionville, Virginia, using sustainable farming practices like probiotic soil dynamics. The full-spectrum images highlight the colorful array of the food grown at the farm as well as capturing farm life from the perspective of kids and animals. We find the produce photos are just what we need when bereft of ideas to answer that nagging “What’s for dinner?” question.