Pumpkin Picking at Poplars Farm, Bristol

Now I'm not usually one for following the crowds but after seeing my entire Instagram feed full of pumpkin pictures lately, I decided that I needed to jump on the bandwagon and take the boys pumpkin picking this half term!

We'd never been to a pumpkin patch before and I didn't really know what to expect but after doing a little bit of research, it looked like Poplars Farm in Frampton Cotterell would be our best bet.

It's just a short drive from Bristol and so easy to get to. We arrived to find the car park nearly full but the place itself didn't feel overly busy. I'm guessing that this is because it also serves the café and farm shop, so not everyone was there for the same reasons as us.

We didn't have far to go to find the pumpkin patch and activities but even though everything was openly laid out, it wasn't very clear how to sign up or pay. Luckily a friendly passer-by saw us looking confused and stopped to explain where we needed to go!

It turns out that we had to start at the café (which kind of makes sense!) where I went to the counter and paid just £10 for both boys (£5 each) to take part in pumpkin picking and all of the activities on offer. Considering that supermarket pumpkins are around £2-3 each, I thought this was pretty good value! I also liked that there weren't any additional costs as it seems that a lot of places charge for each individual pumpkin on top of the entry fee.

The boys couldn't wait to choose theirs and raced off to explore the pumpkin patch! Unlike some of big open fields I'd seen on Instagram, this patch was quite wild and leafy which meant that a lot of the pumpkins were well hidden. This added a whole new level of fun for the boys as they loved searching for the pumpkins and discovering so many different sizes and variations (neither of them had ever seen green ones before!)

Even though we were lucky enough to visit the pumpkin patch on a dry day, the ground was still quite muddy so I was glad we'd worn wellies. If you're thinking of going pumpkin picking for the first time then I'd definitely recommend wearing waterproofs, wellies (even if you think you won't need them!) and gloves (some of the stalks were really spiky so the boys were a bit scared to touch them!) It's also worth taking a carrier bag or something to transport your pumpkins in as there weren't any wheelbarrows available.

We weren't quite so well prepared though, so once we'd chosen our pumpkins (a large 'Finley-sized' one and a smaller 'Jacob-sized' one!) I carefully carried them over to the car.

Next up, it was time for some activities! Among other things there was marshmallow toasting, a 'find the spider' competition, spooky sweets and free unlimited squash in the café. Finley decided that squash wasn't quite up to the job of warming him up after being out in the chilly autumn air and persuaded me to buy him a hot chocolate, while Jacob was more interested in the spooky skeleton biscuits they had on offer!

After we'd refuelled, we headed back out explore the rest of the farm. There was a pig pen right alongside the pumpkin patch which made the boys very happy! They named two of the pigs Peppa and George (very original, I know!) and took great delight in watching them eat their food and wander around the pen.

On the other side of the pig pen was the farm's play area. This was such a lovely space and had a great range of equipment, lots of which was made from re-purposed materials. There were tree swings, slides, a pretend tractor and even a wooden fort on top of a little hill!

The boys were in their element here - so much so that the inevitable happened and Jacob launched himself down a slide and straight into a huge muddy puddle! He was absolutely covered (typically the boys weren't wearing their puddle suits!) so I decided to call it a day and cleaned him up as best I could before bundling him into the car to wash the rest off at home.

The boys thought that having a bath in the middle of the day was the best thing ever! They got straight into their onesies afterwards and spent the afternoon snuggled up under a blanket watching films - the perfect end to a lovely little autumn activity!

Poplars Farm is situated in on the outskirts of north east Bristol in Frampton Cotterell. It's easy to get to as it's directly off of the B4058 (Bristol Road) and parking is completely free.

Being quite small, Poplars Farm was perfect for the boys at this age but as they get older, we might venture out to some of the bigger pumpkin patches. Other local options include:

Avon Valley Adventure & Wildlife Park (Keynsham):
Farrington's Farm Shop (Farrington Gurney):
Noah's Ark Zoo Farm (Wraxall):

In the meantime, we'll definitely be heading back to Poplars Farm once pumpkin picking season is over so that we can sample some more yummy treats in their café and say hello to Peppa and George again (and don't worry, I'll make sure the boys are wearing their waterproofs next time!)

Have you ever been pumpkin picking before? Do you have any top tips?

(Disclaimer: We paid for our admission to Poplars Farm in full, as well as our food, drink and all associated costs. This post and its content is in no way affiliated with Poplars Farm.)

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