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Cherry pickin' time in Leona Valley

Cuenca, Ecuador
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Cherry pickin' time in Leona Valley

Enjoy life with a bowlful of real family farm fresh u-pick cherries! Yep, it's Cherry picking season once again in Leona Valley, just 9 miles west of Palmdale and around 60 miles north of Downtown Los Angeles.

The season starts off with a old fashioned family friendly Cherry Parade and Festival. This year is the 40th anniversary of the event, and so the theme is "Cherry Jubilee - 40 Fruitful Years." It's always held on the first Saturday of June, and Saturday, June 1st will be the date for this hour long parade. Floats, community queens, horses, and antique cars will parade by on the Leona Avenue parade route. Ever had a deep fried cherry burrito? This is your chance to enjoy this sweet treat and local seasonal favorite of mine! (wide grin) Kids (and the kids at heart) will love participating in (or watching) the cherry pie eating contest. . . bring your napkins! (smile)

All of the orchards here are pesticide free, and some are certified organic. Sweet cherries will be available starting June 1 and sour varieties will be available in July. Honey made from the bees pollinating the cherry trees is often available at the orchards, and picnic tables, wagons for the kids to ride on, and more are also available at many of the 20 or so orchards in this slow paced rural valley, settled by German immigrants in the 1870's who came here via the Butterfield Stage Line.

No credit or debit cards for your purchases here, though. Bring old fashioned cash. These are family farmers, after all, and they keep it simple. My experience is you get a larger, sweeter cherry by picking them yourself at about half the price of the supermarket. . . not a bad deal. Come on over to Leona Valley starting June 1st until the cherries are all picked. Here's a link about the orchards in the area, which has a "directions" tab to the site: http://www.cherriesupic.com/welcome.html

12 replies to this topic
Cuenca, Ecuador
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1. Re: Cherry pickin' time in Leona Valley

Today is the day for the Leona Valley Cherry Parade and Festival. Roads close at 9:15 AM, and reopen about 11:30 AM after the parade. Parade starts promptly at 10:00 AM. Hope to see some TripAdvisor folks there! Cherries for the pickin' afterwards, all day today and each day 'till they're all gone.

We aren't affected by the Powerhouse Fire in Green Valley, by the way. Informative link here: http://www.myleonavalley.org/Home_Page.html Out of towners should come via the Antelope Valley Freeway/CA Route 14 and West Palmdale Blvd./Elizabeth Lake Road to get to 90th Street West and the Cherry Parade. San Francisquito Canyon Road is closed, while Bouquet Canyon Road and Elizabeth Lake Road west of Leona Valley is open to residents only. Lake Hughes Road I wouldn't recommend taking due to fire proximity and the twists and curves on it. Hope to see folks come on out!

Los Angeles...
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2. Re: Cherry pickin' time in Leona Valley

I didn't know there were cherry orchards in the area - thanks for the info. Wish is wasn't supposed to get so hot today. Glad the fire isn't a threat.

Cuenca, Ecuador
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3. Re: Cherry pickin' time in Leona Valley

You're very welcome, Koda! Cherry orchards have been in Leona Valley, Lake Elizabeth and Lake Hughes for generations now. Long time family farm situation for folks who like that kind of gentlemanly living.

The temperature right now this early afternoon in Leona Valley is only 85 degrees F. with a gentle wind of 6 mph gusting to 15 mph. Nine per cent humidity. Shade from the cherry trees. . . so all in all, not nearly as hot as you might think coming from a Los Angeles perspective. Elevation here is 4626 feet above sea level, so we don't bake like the San Fernando Valley does, for example. Come on out, we'll show you a great time!

We've even had a couple of Asian language tour coaches stop by Villa del Sol cherry ranch (Elizabeth Lake Road and Godde Hill Road - the first orchard you'll see coming from Palmdale) and the place is humming. . . and so are the rest of the cherry orchards. Great to see so many folks enjoy the day here with us.

Again, now that the parade and festival are over and done with for this year, cherry picking is the thing to do. Lots of Bing cherries to pick for this month, and more for July. Come on out Sunday, or any day of the week (Mondays are usually a day off for the u-pick cherry orchards, though) and you'll get all the fresh, delicious cherries you want. . . at a fraction of the cost of what the supermarkets will charge you. Any questions, let me know!

Los Angeles...
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4. Re: Cherry pickin' time in Leona Valley

I have arthritis and have recently discovered that cherries have strong anti-inflammatory properties. Got to get up there and stock up. You know, I've been going to this area for years, Palmdale, Pearblossom, Devil's Punchbowl, etc, but never knew about the cherries until I read this thread.

Cuenca, Ecuador
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5. Re: Cherry pickin' time in Leona Valley

Koda, when you come, please PM me and we'll do a meetup if you would like that. I'd be honored to host! (smile)

Torrance, California
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6. Re: Cherry pickin' time in Leona Valley

Hello, I would love to meet this place as soon as sour cherries are available. Will you please let me know when sour cherries are available? please also advise on pricing details and Orchard rules. Thank you!

Los Angeles...
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7. Re: Cherry pickin' time in Leona Valley

I've still got to make it up there....

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8. Re: Cherry pickin' time in Leona Valley

Do you know which orchards have sour cherries? If so are they in season now?

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9. Re: Cherry pickin' time in Leona Valley

When will be the Cherry pickn' time in Leona Valley for 2015?

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10. Re: Cherry pickin' time in Leona Valley

Hi Guille, a few orchards are open now and Villa del Sol opens Tuesday 5/26. The annual cherry festival and parade is scheduled for Saturday June 6th

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