Germany’s most popular berry is finally in season. Erdbeer stands are popping up across Berlin, tempting park-goers to purchase a punnet as as they sup their sunset Sekt. Dominating the city’s seasonal strawberry scene is Karls Erdbeer Hof, with its bright red, strawberry-shaped stands boasting queues to rival Berghain.
But we all know that berries taste better when you’ve picked them yourself, perhaps due to the fact you get a bit of nature – or that the process of picking can be rather meditative (or did we just get a bit delirious from the sun last time we went?).
There are dozens of Hofladen in and around Berlin and Brandenburg offering Selbstpflücke (pick-your-own). The season has officially begun, which means we now have at least two months of juicy red berries to enjoy.
Here’s our roundup of where to pick your own strawberries in Berlin in 2022.
Where: Potsdam Nord
What you can pick: Apples, pears, strawberries, blueberries, raspberries, cherries, plums, grapes, redcurrants
Cost? €2 entrance fee, then you pay per kg depending on what you’ve picked
Hidden behind the Potsdam Palaces you’ll find a self-described wild garden, bursting with colour and life: this isn’t one of those adventure playground farms, it’s a working fruit farm with a large cultivated area – meaning if it rains you’ll get muddy, and if it’s sunny you’ll get dusty. This is one of the most diverse pick-your-own farms in the region, so whenever you go throughout the summer, you’ll be able to get your hands on the ripest seasonal fruits.
There are also training courses on offer for those who want to work on their green-finger skills or learn about regional wild herbs. The Hofladen – as well as providing a much needed Kaffee und Kuchen hit after some time harvesting berries – sells an impressive range of local produce, from Spreewald gherkins to meats and cheeses. Be sure to say hello to the farm animals before you leave, too.
Make a day of it: Stock up on goodies from the farm and picnic in the UNESCO-listed palace gardens or take a dip in nearby Schlänitz-See.
Get the train to Potsdam, and then it’s a 25-minute bus ride.
Am Heineberg 2, 14469 Potsdam, Wed-Sun 10-18 (last entrance 17:00)
What you can pick: Strawberries
Cost? €5.95 per kg of strawberries
Spargelhof Klaistow is a family-run farm, owned by the Buschmann and Winkelmann families, who grow fresh fruit and vegetables – as well as rearing geese. As you can imagine, it’s very kid-friendly and there are giant slides, a petting zoo with (tame) goats, a climbing forest and a maize maze (in which we may or may not have gotten lost…).
Come for the strawberry picking, stay for the restaurant where you can enjoy the freshest of – very traditionally German – meals. Don’t leave without sampling some asparagus, not just because the farm is named after the stuff (which it also grows), but because Beelitz is an asparagus district, AKA somewhere that produces really good Spargel.
Make a day of it: Visit the recently reopened Baum und Zeit, where you can walk through the treetops over the creepy abandoned asylum below (book in advance).
Get the train to Beelitz-Heilstätten, from which it’s a 20-minute cycle.
Glindower Str. 28, 14547 Beelitz, Mon-Fri 9-18 and Sat & Sun 8-18 (last entrance 17.00)
Berliner Beerengärten Schönfließ
Where: Bergfelder Chaussee
What you can pick: Blueberries, strawberries, redcurrants
Cost? Pay per kilogram depending on what you’ve picked
The Berliner Beerengarten, of which there are six, are run by the DAH Group, a leading company in the field of sustainable agriculture, energy and ecology. While they primarily use agriculture to fuel energy production, they also know how to run a pretty mean pick-your-own.
The no-nonsense approach means you get to the goods very quickly, while also having lots of space. The Schönfließ site has a quaint berry cafe, serving – you guessed it – berry-related food, such as cake.
Make a day of it: Jump on your bike at Pankow and cycle the Schlosspark Niederschönhausen loop. The ride takes about 3 hours, which takes you through forest, over the Havel and directly past Berliner Beerengarten Schönfließ.
Get the S-Bahn to S-Bergfelde, from where it’s a 20-minute walk.
Bergfelder Chaussee, 16567 Mühlenbecker Land, Mon-Sun, 10-18 (last entrance 17.30)
Note that there are other sites by the same company in Brandenburg, including in Oranienburg, Blumberg and Flakensee.
What you can pick: Strawberries, apples, blueberries
Cost? Price per kilo posted daily
There are seven different strawberry varieties on offer, with names like Harmony, Lambada and Malwina (yes, they all taste as good as they sound). If you don’t feel like picking your strawberries yourself, you can also take home a ready-made punnet.
Make a day of it: Take the S-Bahn to Henningsdorf and then regional services to Vehlefanz. From there it’s a 10-minute bike ride past the beautiful Mühlensee – the perfect spot to enjoy your juicy bounty. Alternatively, you can reach SL Gartenbau via a 45-minute drive north-east of the city.
Perwenitzer Chaussee 2, Oberkrämer (Brandenburg), self-harvest, Thu-Sun 9-18, tel. 0172/388 82 83
The Hofladen Schultz’ens Siedlerhof
What you can pick: Strawberries – but you can also buy asparagus, apples, cherries and potatoes.
Cost? Pay per kilogram
If you’re hungry after your hard day’s labour, you can pay a visit to the farm’s small restaurant.
Make a day of it: Take regional services to Werder (Havel) and ride half an hour to the farm. Stop off at Werder Insel for photos of the adorable old town. After picking, explore the nearby lakes, or the many historical buildings in and around Potsdam.
Karl-Liebknecht-Straße 17, Werder (Brandenburg), open daily 10-18.
What you can pick: Strawberries, blueberries, raspberries, blackberries, plums, pears and apples
Cost? Pay per kilogram
Self-picked tastes best and Selbstpflücke Elisenau proves it. Depending on the season, Selbstpflücke Elisenau is a paradise for PYO enthusiasts, boasting a huge variety of fruits ripe for the taking. The price per kilo is even cheaper than in the supermarket – but don’t forget to bring your own basket!
Make a day of it: Take the S-Bahn to Bernau and ride 20 minutes to the farm. On the way back, explore Bernau’s historic town centre, which dates back to the 13th century.
Helenenauer Weg 2, Ahrensfelde, Tel. 03338/75 71 33
Hof Brandenburger Obst
What you can pick: Strawberries, cherries
Cost? Pay per kilogram
Make a day of it: Take the train to Werneuchen and then cycle 25 minutes to the Hof. After picking, explore one of the many nearby lakes or check out the nearby Bunker Harnekop, built during GDR times as a bomb-proof shelter (appointment necessary). The Roter Hof in Strausberg, a little further southeast, offers a petting zoo for the kids, while Findlingshof Strausberg gives guided hikes that explain the region’s interesting geology.
Hof Brandenburger Obst grows several varieties of strawberry which ripen at different stages of the season, meaning there’s plenty for everyone. Flair Rumba and Rendezvous varieties ripen early, Asia and Alinanny in the middle of the season and Florence Salsa and Faith at season’s close. The season stretches from the end of May to the beginning of June, the cherries from the middle to the end of June.
Dorfstraße 37, Altlandsberg (Brandenburg), Tel. 03341/498 77 24
Original article by Emily McDonnell. Additional information from tipBerlin.
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