Frequently Asked Questions

Southern Hill Farms General FAQs:

 

What days are you open during the Fall Festival season?

Our Fall Festival 2021 begins Saturday, September 25th and continues through Sunday, November 7th. Tickets are required to enter the farm and can be found here. Our hours open are Thursdays – 10 am to 4 pm, Fridays – 10 am to 4 pm, Saturdays – 11 am to 7 pm and Sundays, 11 am to 7 pm.

Do you allow guests to smoke on the farm?

No, smoking and vaping is not permitted anywhere on the farm.

Are you open year-round?

No, we are only open for seasonal events in the winter, spring, and fall. Please check our website and social media pages for the most up-to-date information.

What crops do you have available for picking?

We have u-pick blueberries, peaches, zinnias and sunflowers in the spring, u-pick sunflowers and zinnias in the fall, and u-pick strawberries in the winter.

What types of payment do you accept?

We are a cashless venue. Credit, debit and mobile accepted. Personal checks are not accepted.

Are animals (including dogs) allowed on the farm?

No, we do not allow dogs or pets onto the farm during any of our public events. While we love dogs as much as you do, we cannot allow animals of any kind onto the farm during for the health and safety of our guests in accordance with federal and state regulations. Florida food safety regulations prohibit any animals from entering a field that will be harvested for the consumption of fresh produce. For more information regarding service animals vs. emotional support animals and what is covered under the ADA, please review their Service Animal FAQ. Thank you for your patience and understanding.

Is there an admission or parking fee?

During our fall season there is not a parking fee, however there is an admission fee per person. There is no admission or parking fee for the winter and spring u-pick seasons.

Can I bring outside food, drinks or alcoholic beverages to the farm?

We do not allow outside coolers filled with any type of beverage, any alcohol, and catered meals (including cake and ice cream). You are welcome to bring bottled waters, non-alcoholic drinks and snack foods. If it requires reserving space for a party or gathering, you must rent a Birthday Pavilion.

Do you have picnic tables for guests to use?

Yes, we have two covered barns and a rooftop deck with complimentary picnic tables available for our guests. All picnic tables are first come, first served. If you would like to reserve space for a group or you would like to bring in an outside meal (like cake and ice cream for a birthday celebration), please see our Birthday Pavilion rental info below.

Can I reserve space at the farm for a party or gathering?

We have 6 separate Birthday Pavilion rentals available during our normal business hours during our winter events. Please contact us at 407-986-5806, extension 4 to reserve yours today.

Is there accessibility for disabled persons?

Yes, we have handicapped accessible restrooms and the majority of our farm grounds have grass or pavers. Please note that some areas on the farm are sandy and might be difficult for a wheelchair to pass through. Our Southern Hill Market and adjacent barn have concrete flooring and/or pavers.

Do you have a lost and found?

Yes, you can visit the farm during our normal u-pick hours to see if your item was turned into our lost and found, located in the Southern Hill Market.

Do you have restrooms and baby changing tables?

Yes, we have both! We have permanent restrooms as well as baby changing tables in both the men and women’s restrooms.

Can I bring my stroller or wagon to the farm?

Yes you are welcome to bring either and many people do, but please be aware that some areas of the farm are more difficult to navigate with a wagon or stroller. We have paved areas, concrete under our Market barn and grass in between the blueberry rows which make pushing a stroller very manageable, however the strawberry and peach fields do not have the same ground support.

When are your busiest times vs. less crowded times while open to the public?

Since we have more family friendly activities on Saturdays and Sundays, weekends are typically more popular for guests than weekdays. If you are looking for a quiet and secluded farm experience, we suggest coming weekdays when open seasonally. On weekends our busiest time of day is mid day (approximately 11 am to 2 pm), with mornings and later afternoons being less popular times to visit.

Are there bees or other insects at your property?

Yes, we are a working farm and there is wildlife present, including bees, ants and other insects. If you have an environmental or other known allergy, we suggest bringing the appropriate medications.

 

Winter and Spring U-Pick FAQs:

 

Do you sell blueberry bushes?

Yes! We sell the Arcadia variety in one gallon pots for $20 each during our u-pick seasons.

What is this white coating on my blueberries?

The white coating is natural and is called the bloom. The bush creates it to protect the blueberry as it ripens from pests and other natural invaders. As the blueberry ripens, it loses it bloom. Once a blueberry has become over ripened, you will notice that there is no longer a white coating on it. Some varieties of blueberries produce more bloom than others.

What do I need to bring for blueberry, peach, sunflower and zinnia picking?

We suggest wearing closed toe shoes, a hat and/or sunscreen and cool, comfortable clothing. We’ll provide you with one gallon buckets to pick blueberries with and baskets to pick peaches. At checkout, we will provide you with clamshells and bags to take your fruit home in. We’ll also provide scissors for cutting flowers and floral bags to transport them home.

Can I eat the blueberries, strawberries, or peaches in the fields?

You are welcome to eat blueberries as you are picking (we encourage you to try them to find your favorite variety), and there is not an ‘all you can eat’ fee. Peaches and strawberries, however, cannot be eaten in the field due to their limited quantity. All peaches and strawberries must be purchased before you eat them.

Why do you not know when your opening dates will be for your u-pick crops?

Since the ripening of all fruit depends on its environment, we can only predict when we will have some ready for picking until just a couple of weeks before hand. There is no exact science to it, and central Florida weather can fluctuate greatly in the late winter and early spring months (as the blueberries, strawberries, and peaches are flowering, forming and ripening), which means there can be a large difference in opening dates from season to season.