If you’ve only been to Beechwood Farms for strawberries or have heard of them in passing and have thought about going, read on. This place is a hidden gem in the Upstate, SC.
I have a list of places I want to explore in the Upstate. It’s long. And I get pretty excited when I have the opportunity to check one off the list. Beechwood Farms is one of those places I had not been able to visit and wow, I’ve been missing out.
Beechwood Farms has u-pick strawberries in the spring, sunflowers and vegetables in the summer, and pumpkins in the fall. They have special events and a fruit and produce stand that is open April through mid-October. But the story behind the farm is just as interesting and beautiful as everything you’ll see when you go.
About Beechwood Farms
I was greeted by Donna Tesner when I arrived at Beechwood Farms. Donna runs part of the farm now as a second-generation farmer. Her parents, Elizabeth and Billy Ledford, started Beechwood Farms over 50 years ago and much of her family still lives nearby. Just after she introduced herself, her parents pulled up so I could meet them. Her dad, Billy Ledford, is pure sunshine. His blue eyes sparkled as he regaled me with tales of meeting his wife in high school and starting the farm because he didn’t want to have a boss. His whole family grew up in the area and he’s obviously a proud South Carolinian who loves farming, family, and faith.
I’ve interviewed enough farmers and written on plenty of farms to understand that farming life isn’t easy or predictable but somehow, the Ledford family made it work. Billy and Elizabeth started out small by growing corn and beans and eventually bought more acres to start u-pick strawberry fields and other crops. They lease out several acres to another family, the Ceron family, who runs the open-air market and sells the fruit and vegetables grown right there on the farm, picked at their prime and perfectly ripe.
U-Pick Strawberries, Vegetables, and Pumpkins
I knew of Beechwood Farms because of their u-pick strawberries in the spring. Our readers are always recommending them and rightly so. I’ve had their berries at the TD Saturday Market in Greenville and they are delicious. Strawberry season is very short, only five or six weeks at best, so get ready around April to head over there and get your strawberries.
Throughout the summer, the Ceron family lets visitors go out into the fields and pick vegetables. It can’t get any fresher than that. They have squash, several different kinds of beans, corn, peppers, eggplant, tomatoes, and cabbage. They also have a vast array of fresh produce in the market to purchase if you don’t feel like picking.
During the fall, you’ll get to pick your own pumpkins from the vine. We saw at least three different fields filled with pumpkins of all sizes already in mid-August so they’re coming soon. The best way to stay updated on what’s in season, what’s open, and what hours is through Beachwood Farms’ Facebook page. Things like weather can quickly impact hours and availability.
The Sunflower Field
Donna runs the sunflower field and her enthusiasm and love for these beautiful flowers is evident. Besides helping to run the farm, she’s a teacher in Greenville County (one of the best her dad tells me, which is not only his opinion as she has been nominated as one of the top 10 teachers in the county), which really plays well into the tour she gives to visitors when they come and visit the farm and pick sunflowers. We really enjoyed learning about all the different things they grow. She will give tours over the summer for school kids (just call and ask about it).
Donna grows more than 25 varieties of sunflowers. I didn’t even know there were 25 varieties of sunflowers. We visited Beechwood Farms towards the end of sunflower season but there were still lots of beauties out there in the fields from bright yellow to red sunflowers, from small pretty blooms to huge ones the size of my head.
When you go pick sunflowers in late summer, you’ll get a wagon ride up to the sunflower field, which overlooks the farm. It’s beautiful. This is one of those farms that allows professional photographers to do sessions with clients as well. There’s a fee to go but if you’re wondering just how pretty family photos can be in a sunflower field, here are a few gorgeous shots that will probably make you want to book a session stat.
Donna works hard to find the best sunflowers to grow in her field and I think she has done an amazing job. Even though the sunflowers were just about done showing their glory when we were there, the ones that still stood were breathtaking. I can imagine what an entire field of yellow, red, and gold sunflowers looks like when they are all in bloom.
Visiting Beechwood Farms
The farm is open Monday-Saturday 8 am – 5 pm seasonally. They usually open for the season mid-April and close after the first frost, likely mid-October. It’s best to check their Facebook page before you go for up-to-date hours.
The farm also has some animals to feed and a playground for kids. They have public events throughout their season but again, it’s best to check their Facebook page for when they happen. And since this is a farm, with dirt and bugs and mud and sunshine, consider wearing closed-toed shoes and clothes you don’t mind getting a little dirt on.
They are located in Marietta not far off of Highway 25. If you need ideas of other things to do in the area, our guide to nearby Travelers Rest can help you out.
Have you visited Beechwood Farms?
204 Bates Bridge Road, Marietta