The last several years we have gone both Apple and Pumpkin Picking at Wasem Fruit Farm. We usually make two trips since we prefer the earlier season apples before pumpkins are ready for picking. This year, we visited on a Saturday afternoon at the end of September for apples. Wasem was crowded that day, but we had better luck finding apples than we did last year.
Yesterday, we returned for pumpkins with a couple of my daughter’s friends. Balancing the schedules of 3 busy third graders wasn’t easy. We were able to meet at the Wasem Pumpkin Patch at 4:30p. We practically had the pumpkin patch to ourselves!
We have been visiting Wasem Pumpkin Patch for at least 5 years. It appears to me that Wasem has increased the size of the pumpkin patch from previous years. In addition to the large pumpkins, the field also contained mini-pumpkins, gourds, and smaller pumpkins. In addition to the large pumpkins that we bought, my daughter and her friends each picked a mini-pumpkin or a gourd to take home.
One of the things that I love about Wasem is that it is a real pumpkin patch and it is simply an orchard/pumpkin patch. There are no extra activities (other than the awesome donuts). However, if you are looking to spend a little more time, Talladay Farms Corn Maze is next door. We had a lot of fun visiting both Wasem and Talladay last year with my daughter’s Brownie Troop.
Recommendations for Wasem Pumpkin Patch
Based on our experience, I have a few suggestions for the Wasem pumpkin patch.
The Weekends are the most crowded time to visit Wasem Fruit Farm. The peak of the crowds are late morning to early afternoon. When we visited mid-afternoon in September for apples, we were there mid- to late-afternoon. Crowds were definitely smaller when we left than when we arrived. Early-morning on the weekend is a great time to visit (I suggest visiting the store first to avoid the long lines for donuts).
Weekdays are less crowded than weekdays. During the day, Wasem hosts Field Trips, so you may encounter school groups. They do get a little more crowded after school, but as it got closer to the 6p closing time, they were fairly empty.
The Wasem Pumpkin Patch is located a fair distance from the main building. You can drive your car back to the pumpkin path. Depending on the number and size of pumpkins you select, it may not be feasible to carry them to the main building. It took us 4 trips to bring our pumpkins to the scale inside the store.
My one recommendation is to set a meeting place with friends. I had driven back to the pumpkin patch while our friends were waiting in the parking lot by the main building. Fortunately with cell phones we were able to connect.
Wear older clothing and proper footwear. I recommend closed-toe shoes. We wore our rain boots and it was great protection from the vines and they were able to handle the dirt/spots of mud.
Older clothes are also a good choice as the pumpkins will be dirty and the larger ones may require leaning against your body as you carry them.
This year, I also learned to check the bottom of the pumpkins that my daughter picks. There was quite a bit of damp caked mud on the bottom of one pumpkin that left a stain on my rug (fortunately my car is 10+ years old). When I was taking the out of the car to weigh them, I used a rock to remove the worst of the mud.
I try to remember to bring a plastic garbage bag to lay down under the pumpkins to minimize the dirt transfer to the carpet. A broken down cardboard box would also work well.
Of course no trip to the pumpkin patch is complete without donuts and cider. It was around 5:40p by the time we were done visiting the Wasem Pumpkin Patch and had our pumpkins weighed. There were only a couple of varieties of donuts still available (apple cider with maple or vanilla frosting). While not my traditional favorite, I really enjoyed the maple frosted donut.
We bought a gallon of apple cider (cups are on sale for $0.05/cup), or you could bring your own. One benefit to the cooler nights we have been having is that the yellow jackets were non-existent – a rare feat for the orchard. In addition to the cider and donuts, they have apples, apple sauce, popcorn, and much more for sale in the store.
It is also a good idea to carry baby wipes or something similar to clean your hands after the pumpkin patch.
Wasem Fruit Farm is located at 6580 Judd Rd, Milan, MI. It is easily reached from the Willis Rd exit of US 23. Head East on Willis Rd. Turn Right on Pitman Rd. At the end of Pitman Rd, turn left onto Judd Rd and Wasem Fruit Farm will be immediately on your right. Be warned that you will be driving on dirt roads to get there.