Barden Family Orchard in North Scituate, RI integrated pest mgmt / GAP certified
North Scituate, RI
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A fun family destination and activity. Pick your own fruit. All of our products are grown using the most innovative techniques to conserve our water, soil, and biological resources.
Bold foods are in season now according to our Harvest Calendar. Call to find out exact availability. Every farm and every season are unique. Most farms are also residences. Unless Farmstand or Pick Your Own hours are noted, please be respectful and call ahead before going to the farm.
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North Scituate, RI - Barden Family Orchard is owned by Gil and Sandie Barden. What began as a fruit farm in 1931, has evolved into a more diversified farm including sweet corn, pumpkins, raspberries, blueberries and assorted vegetables.
Gil's grandparents, John and Hazel Barden, started the farm in 1931. Their apples and peaches were sold to other area farms that sold directly to the consumer, and in the Providence wholesale market. In the 1970’s, Hazel and John were one of the first Rhode Island apple growers to offer “pick your own” to the public.
Both Gil and Sandie were trained in college to be wetland biologists and both worked for many years in that profession. Sandie decided to leave her position several years ago when their son was born. Gil had been running the farm and working a full-time job since 1985. In 2005, he began to farm full-time. One of the things that influenced Gil's decision was the ability to sell his produce at area farmers markets, through farm cooperatives, and at a farm market that would be constructed on their farm.
Every fall the Bardens open their orchard to the public. When the apples and peaches are ripe, people come to the orchard and pick their own fruit. This can be a wonderful family event. People are encouraged to bring their children, see a real farm in action, and make a day out of it. They go home with fresh picked peaches, apples, sweet corn, tomatoes etc.- a real treat!
Gil uses Integrated Pest Management in his orchard, which allows natural predators to do some of the work to control insects such as aphids and mites. In 2005, a deer fence was erected that surrounds the orchard to prevent deer feeding on fruit buds in early spring. The fence has larger openings near the ground to allow fox and coyotes to enter the orchard and help control the mouse population. Mice eat the bark and roots of fruit trees in the winter when their food is limited. This permanently damages the tree and severely reduces its vigor.
Barden Family Orchard is one of only a few farms in Rhode Island growing peaches and allows Pick your Own peaches in mid-September
Both Gil and Sandie love their life on the farm and feel that this is a wonderful way to raise their family. Their produce is sold at several farmers markets including Kennedy Plaza, Brown University, Armory Park in Providence, Pawtucket, South Kingstown, and the Coastal Growers Market at Casey Farm. If you want a more intimate view of where your food comes from, plan to visit Barden Family Orchard and pick your own fruit this fall.