Your Guide to Triangle Roadside Stands, “U-Pick” Fields, and Farmers Markets to Visit

From berries to lettuces to honey and more, here’s where to shop for local produce year-round.
by Brian Rosenzweig and Addie Ladner

North Carolina is known for its diverse and vibrant range of agriculture. Sweet strawberries in the spring, juicy tomatoes, and corn in the summer, and artisan cheese year-round make up just some of the state’s best homegrown food. Our proximity to rural areas in the Triangle makes for ever-growing offerings at roadside farm stands, “u-pick” fields, and farmers’ markets. But it can be hard to know where to go for these local goods and how to fit them into your food shopping routine. Especially when many roadside stands and small farms operate under the radar. That’s where this list comes in handy: divided up by location, consider adding one of these spots to your grocery run, or make a day trip out of the ones that aren’t as near. This old-fashioned, small-town-feel way of grocery shopping is more fun, kids love it, plus it’s better for our local economy.

Raleigh Farms and Farm Stands:

Ball Berries & Produce
A small stand with a classic, countryside feel, this southern Raleigh location offers a wide selection of tomatoes, berries, pecans, sweetpeas, and more. Fan favorites include the farm fresh, cage-free eggs, homemade jams, jellies, and honey, and later in the season, delicious peaches and watermelons. Monday-Friday, 8 a.m. to 6 p.m., Sundays, 1 to 4 p.m.; 5204 Rock Service Station Road, Raleigh;

City Market Produce
Centrally located in downtown Raleigh, this market open Thursday through Saturday offers delicious fruits and vegetables from local vendors with a convenient, indoor shopping experience. Thursday-Saturday, 7 a.m. to 5 p.m.; 333 Blake Street, Raleigh; 

Interfaith Food Shuttle Farm Stand
An intimate, country-style space just 10 minutes from downtown, Interfaith Food Shuttle’s self-serve farm stand is driven by the organization’s goal of providing the community with the tools and needs necessary to eradicate hunger in the state. With a unique “honor-code” system, the Food Shuttle’s stand is a holistically community-centered program that seeks to feed the Triangle Area while providing funding for the organization’s farmers. Though produce changes in response to community needs, you can often expert to find delicious tomatoes, eggs, squash, peas, eggplants, peppers, and more. Monday-Friday, 8 a.m. to 3 p.m.; 2300 Dover Farm Road, Raleigh;

LL Urban Farms
A hidden North Carolina roadside market, LL Urban Farms boasts an impressive repertoire of tomatoes, squash, eggs, cabbage, local cheeses, and more in a small market space. Centrally located between Raleigh and Apex, this roadside stand is a great option for those looking to step up their produce game without venturing out too far. Monday-Sunday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.; 8225 Holly Springs Road, Raleigh;

Ninja Cow Farm
This grocery-style farm stand offers a wide range of products, from their own farm-fresh eggs and meat cuts to dairy, jams, and artisan soaps from fellow local vendors. With a convenient, store-like experience “just like any other,” Ninja Cow offers an opportunity to get local, farm-fresh products, all at a one-stop-shop. Wednesday-Friday 2 p.m. to 6 p.m., Saturday 9 a.m. to 1 p.m, 7125 Old Stage Road, Raleigh;

Old Milburnie Farm
Self-described as “Raleigh’s best kept secret,” this scenic farm on Beaverdam Lake offers a gorgeous place to spend an afternoon, and see many elements of a small farm first hand. While the market itself is a great place to stock up on carrots, squash, mushrooms, and other fresh produce, don’t be surprised if you end up making a whole day out of the farms gorgeous lakeside view and calming atmosphere. 800 N. Blount Street, Raleigh;

Page Farms
A family-owned farm self-described with “just a little bit of country,” this location is conveniently located between Raleigh, Durham, and Chapel Hill. It’s a popular spot this time of year, especially for families. Offering “u-pick” and “we-pick” options, Page Farms is a great place to get some sweet strawberries while enjoying a day in the sunshine. Mark your calendars for May 15 for the farm’s annual Handmade Market at the Farm event, featuring a wealth of local vendors right on the farm, alongside their own delicious produce. 6100 Mt. Herman Road, Raleigh;

Raleigh City Farm
Raleigh City Farm is an urban, community-led farm in downtown Raleigh, whose focus is to support affordable, local agriculture while teaching the next generation of farmers, right here in Raleigh. This month, the farm will open their farm stand, offering fresh produce like onions, herbs, peppers, carrots and kale, alongside gorgeous, fresh-cut flowers. The fact that it’s right next to city favorites like Yellow Dog Bread Co., Wine Authorities, and Two Roosters is a bonus! Wednesdays, 4 to 7 p.m.; 800 N. Blount Street, Raleigh;

Well-Fed Community Garden
This community-led, urban farm is focused on creating a holistic approach to local, sustainable agriculture. Shop from the garden to enjoy delicious tomatoes, peppers, peas, squash, and more, all grown by community members with a focus towards increasing supply, and reducing food insecurity in the area. Stop into the farm for a visit, or order a pre-picked box online through their Triangle United Growers System. 1321 Athens Drive, Raleigh;

Raleigh Farmers Markets

Black Farmers Market
A market with a message, this Black-led farmers market with alternating locations between Raleigh and Durham seeks to increase access to affordable, healthy food for underserved communities, while eliminating misconceptions about the financial restrictions of fresh, local food. At their spacious location in Raleigh at the Southeast YMCA, this market sports a wealth of creative, POC-owned businesses, from innovative florists at TG Floristry to Blend of Soul Juicery.  With a great cause, this accessible market is a great way to spend a Sunday afternoon, while learning more about food systems in the Triangle. Durham days: 2nd Sunday of the month, 1:30 p.m. to 4 p.m.; Durham, 2nd Sundays, 930 Franklin Street, Durham; Raleigh days: 4th Sunday of the month, 1436 Rock Quarry Road, Raleigh;

Midtown Farmers Market
Right in the center of the outdoor shopping area at North Hills, this Saturday morning farmer’s market dedicates itself to fostering a community atmosphere while promoting sustainability and food system education. The market offers options to stock up on produce, meat, and other groceries, alongside local vendors like Cold off the Press, Junie B’s Bake Shop, and 4th Tree Apparel. And being right in the center of North Hills’ many dining and shopping options, the Midtown Farmers Market makes for a great way to start a Saturday out on the town. Saturdays, 8 a.m. to 12 p.m.; 4160 Main at North Hills Street, Raleigh;

Moore Square Market
This small market in downtown Raleigh returned on May 2, this year on Sundays. Grab your tote and head out for a relaxing afternoon of browsing fresh produce, trying delicious offerings from local food trucks, and enjoying live music. Sundays, 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.; 200 S. Blount Street, Raleigh; 

North Carolina State Farmers Market 
The area’s best-known market is open every day of the week — and spans 30,000 square feet. A massive conglomeration of vendors of Carolina-grown fruits, vegetables, herbs and more, the North Carolina State Farmers Market is sure to have your fix for cage-free eggs, fresh produce, organic cuts of meat, and everything in between. Plus, throughout the week, enjoy the delicious temptations of Market Grill by Carolina Crispy Fry, 321 Coffee, and other local vendors. Monday-Saturday, 5 a.m to 6 p.m., Sundays 8 a.m. to 6 p.m.; 1201 Agriculture Street, Raleigh;

Durham Farms and Farm Stands:

Perkins Orchard
Boasting the title of “Durham’s oldest and largest” produce market, Perkins is a great place to find fresh strawberries, squash, lettuce, and more. Browse Perkins’ outdoor market space for rows of vibrant, high quality produce, alongside the farm’s famous custom cider. Be sure to grab the fan-favorite deal: a $20 peck bag with produce of your choice, alongside a free bonus item thrown in. Monday-Sunday, 9 a.m. to 8 p.m.; 5749 Barbee Road, Durham;

Waller Family Farm
This classic, family run-farm situated in-between Durham and Chapel Hill is set to open later this month, with countless rows of “u-pick” strawberry bushes, alongside a convenient stand offering zucchini, squash, lettuce, eggs, honey, and more. The Waller Family Farm became a popular option last year, with its huge fields allowing plenty of social distancing, and their staff offering plenty of hand-washing and sanitation stations. Though their season hasn’t officially commenced, we’re eager to see what this year will bring! Hours TBA; 5030 Kerley Rd, Durham;

Durham Farmers Markets:

Durham Farmers Market
A Triangle favorite for its energy and offerings of unique varieties of fruit and produce like sunchokes, mushrooms of assorted colors and all the Instagram-worthy flower bouquets, the Durham Farmers Market offers an exciting way to spend a Saturday morning, right in the heart of Durham’s vibrant downtown. Saturdays, 8 a.m. to 12 p.m., 501 Foster Street, Durham,

SoDu Farmers Market
The SoDu (South Durham) Market is host to traditional market foods, sweet treats, and plant nurseries all at once, promising a Saturday morning of fun. Grab your weekly produce, fresh-baked bread, artisan soap, and finely aged wine all in one location. Saturdays, 8 a.m. to 12 p.m.; Greenwood Commons Shopping Center: 5410 NC-55, Durham;

Greater Wake County Farms and Farm Stands:

Needmore Farms
This small, family-owned farm in Fuquay-Varina is a great place to stock up on tomatoes, spinach, onions, peppers, berries, and more. In addition to produce, Needmore sells food items like eggs, herbs, jams, jellies, and honey, alongside gorgeous flowers and handmade goat milk soap. A great stop for a sunny spring day, this location is often commended for its friendly and helpful staff, alongside its fresh, delicious selection. Monday-Saturday, 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.; Sundays 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.; 6502 Sunset Lake Road, Fuquay-Varina;

Ogburn Berries
This family-owned farm outside of Fuquay-Varina is known for its delicious fruit offerings, beginning with sweet strawberries in the springtime, and delicious peaches, watermelon, and cantaloupes later in the summer. With sprawling u-pick fields and a simple roadside market, Ogburn is a great option for those looking for high-quality produce and convenient shopping. Monday-Saturday, 9 a.m. to 7 p.m., Sundays, 1 p.m. to 6 p.m.; 13049 Old Stage Road, Willow Spring;

Porter Farms & Nursery
This expansive location in Willow Springs is a great place to go strawberry picking, with over a hundred acres of land and seemingly endless rows to choose from. Spend an afternoon picking some sweet strawberries, then stop into their market for their selection of blueberries, peppers, peas, squash, and more. After a warm day there, cool yourself down with their homemade, organic ice cream at the ice cream parlor, including flavors like banana pudding, caramel apple crunch, and of course, strawberry shortcake sundaes. Monday-Friday, 8 a.m. to 9 p.m., Saturdays, 8:30 a.m. to 9 p.m., Sundays, 12 p.m. to 9 p.m.; 3525 NC Highway 42, Willow Spring;

Greater Wake County Farmers Markets:

Clayton Farmers Market 
Hosted every Saturday morning, this market hosted on Clayton’s main street boasts delicious vegetables, meats, honey, wine, and more. With a unique blend of semi-rural and semi-urban area, Clayton has unique access to some of the area’s best farms, including Chickadee Farms, a Clayton original and favorite throughout the Triangle. Stop in to shop produce, or just enjoy some delicious food from bakeries like Nancy Jo’s Homemade and NC Cookie Momster. Saturdays, 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.; 348 E Main Street,Clayton;

Holly Springs Farmers Market
Since its grand opening on May 1st, this Saturday market offers a vibrant assortment of fresh produce, artisan soaps and honeys, sweet treats, and everything in-between. Spread across a horseshoe-shaped parking lot, enjoy plenty of local favorites like Chickadee Farms, Dew Drop Chocolates, and Five Star Coffee. Bring your whole family (dogs welcome!) and stop in to enjoy some of the area’s best local foods and products on a sunny weekend morning. Saturdays, 8 a.m. to 12 p.m.; 300 W Ballentine Street, Holly Springs;

Lyon Farm
This family-owned farm north of Durham just opened for the season this week, offering “u-pick” strawberries alongside pre-picked selections! Find delicious strawberries, jellies and jams, tomatoes, onions, potatoes, and more at Lyon’s, alongside blueberries, blackberries, and peaches later in the season. Monday-Saturday 8 a.m. to 8 p.m.; Sunday 1 to 6 p.m.; 1544 Munns Road, Creedmoor;

Chapel Hill/Orange County Area Farms and Farm Stands:

McAdams Farm
A favorite in the Orange County area and a staple at the Carrboro Farmers Market, McAdams is opening its “u-pick” strawberry season soon! Whether picking your own in the sprawling orchards or grabbing the finest picks out front, McAdams offers delicious strawberries, tomatoes, squash, green beans, and more. Plus, the farm offers selections and hard-curated bouquets of fresh-cut flowers, including snapdragons, dianthus, larkspur, and later in the season, sunflowers. Fridays, 2 to 5:30 p.m.; 100 Efland-Cedar Grove Rd, Efland;

Chapel Hill/Orange County Area  Farmers Markets:

Carrboro Farmers Market
This market hosted every Saturday and Wednesday offers tons of unique foodie and boutique experiences. With every item sourced within 50 miles, the Carrboro Farmers Market has all the staples of your standard market — dairy, bread, eggs, cheese, and produce — alongside authentic tamales, mouth-watering donuts, gorgeous bouquets, and artisan pottery. Wednesdays, 3 to 6 p.m., Sundays, 7 a.m. to 12 p.m.; 301 W Main Street, Carrboro;

Eno River Farmers Market
Every Saturday, the charming historic town of Hillsborough comes together for the Eno River Farmers Market, hosted downtown. This smaller market features local dairy, eggs, produce, soaps, and more, alongside plenty of good coffee and snacks. Plus, just a short walk from the riverwalk entrance, this market serves as a great place to begin a fun day out in the country. Saturdays, 8 a.m. to 12 p.m.; 144 E Margaret Lane, Hillsborough;

Apex Farms and Farm Stands:

Buckwheat Farm, Apex
A great day trip for adults and kids alike, Buckwheat is a “u-pick” farm that specializes in berries. With several varieties of strawberries and blueberries, pre-picked selections of fruits and veggies, fresh jellies, jams, and more, Buckwheat offers an ideal place to stock up on produce while also making for a fun weekend outing. Barbecue is served on the weekend, and frequent visitors are blessed by the presence of goats, horses, and even peacocks (yes, peacocks!) around the grounds. Hours TBA; 2700 Holland Road, Apex;

DJ’s Berry Patch, Apex
This Apex farm is the perfect spot to kick off the start of berry season. A great location to buy wholesale or, better yet, go and pick your own delicious strawberries, DJ’s Berry Patch is as much a fun springtime activity as it is a mere produce run. While there, be sure to grab some of the farm’s delicious homemade products, including strawberry preserves, ice cream, and strawberry vinaigrette. Monday-Saturday, 9 a.m. to 6 p.m., Sundays, 11 a.m. to 6 p.m.; 1223 Salem Church Road, Apex;

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Apex Farmers Markets:

Apex Farmers Market
This market hosted every Saturday tends towards the irresistible side, with fresh popcorn, locally sourced macarons and bakery treats, artisan soaps, succulent plants, and more sold alongside your standard market products. An especially great option for kids, this market is full of fun, while still offering all the convenience of your standard market experience. Saturdays, 9 a.m. to 12 p.m.; P4MX+58, Apex,;