Camarillo’s fertile soil and Mediterranean climate make the area prime growing grounds for premium produce used by discerning professional chefs and home cooks alike. The region’s billion-dollar agriculture industry is renowned for in-demand crops including strawberries, lemons, avocados, blueberries, raspberries and tomatoes. Cut flowers and nursery stock are also big business in Camarillo—chances are those starter plants, trees and herbs you see at your local nursery and hardware stores could very well have originated here.
Beyond getting a taste of our local bounty at farm-to-fork restaurants, Camarillo visitors can take advantage of the abundant opportunities to learn more about our food systems, the importance of sustainable farming and how we can all cultivate a closer connection to the land through what we eat. From getting hands-on at a u-pick berry farm and shopping roadside farm stands to exploring farms with petting zoos and touring small family farms, we’ve mapped out must-stops on a Camarillo Farm Trail Tour.
SAMPLE & SHOP
The Camarillo Certified Farmers’ Market is held Saturday mornings from 8:00 a.m. until noon in Old Town and features produce from dozens of regional farms along with prepared food and artisan vendors. This is a great opportunity to meet the farmers and see what’s in season all in one place.
Camarillo strawberries are a thing of juicy, delicious legend and Los Posas Berries is a reliable roadside farm stand (typically open Thursdays through Sundays) where you can purchase and sample strawberries picked fresh that day—they are considered some of the best in California, if not the best. In addition to luscious berries, the farm stand often has chocolate dipped strawberries on hand as well as a selection of other locally grown produce.
One of our most famous local names in farming, McGrath Family Farmers are fourth generation farmers with roots in the community dating back to 1868. Dedicated to regenerative farming, several rising star “micro-farmers” also make use of their 300-acres. McGrath produce is sold at prestigious Southern California farmers’ markets where top chefs shop to supply their weekly menus. You can go straight to the source when visiting us in Camarillo with a stop at The Store at McGrath Family Farm, which carries a robust selection of produce and flowers from their farm as well as gourmet goods like jams and jellies.
Open seven days a week from 9:00 a.m. until 5:00 p.m., the Rodela Produce & Flowers farm stand specializes in cut flowers and organic fruits and veggies. Strawberries and honey are big staples here, too. Paty’s Farm is a photogenic roadside stand in Somis known for its mangoes, peaches, berries and other vibrant locally grown produce. While in the neighborhood, swing by Somis Nut House to stock up on nuts, dried fruits and hand-crafted candies.
TOUCH & TASTE
One Acre Farm at Gerry Ranch opens to the public on Saturdays from 9:00 a.m. until 1:00 p.m. for u-pick blueberry harvesting in season (generally February through April) and accepts visitors by appointment. They also sell blueberry plants if you want to start your own mini blueberry garden and you can buy blueberry flats on weekends with advanced orders.
Situated on the outskirts of Camarillo, Underwood Family Farms’ Somis Farm Center is the perfect place to bring the kids, who will delight in the wagon rides, u-pick produce and animal-interaction opportunities. Guests can say “hello” to the resident sheep, alpacas, chickens and pygmy goats at the Animal Center. U-pick options change with what’s in season and range from tangerines and strawberries to blueberries, raspberries and blackberries. Underwood Family Farms also hosts educational farm tours by appointment, with the option of strawberry, veggie or pumpkin picking, or an “Animal Ed-Venture” that includes a presentation and animal feeding. Whether the focus is produce or animals, all tours include meeting the farmer, riding the vintage tractor-drawn wagon and picnicking.
Also in Somis, Oats & Ivy Farm is home to more than 70 animals and organic gardens growing guava, passionfruit, olives and more. They host a variety of workshops to educate those interested in raising goats as well as seasonal goat yoga classes. Oats & Ivy also sells their goat milk bath and beauty products online.
One of the micro-farms on McGrath Family Farms land, Baby Root Farm grows mini roots and shoots as well as fruits. If you’re interested in learning more about regenerative farming, Baby Root offers educational tours by appointment. Set forNovember 5, 2022, Ventura County Farm Day, presents a rare, once-a-year opportunity to visit and tour several farms not typically open to the public.
FARM TO TABLE
After a day spent touring, picking and shopping for produce, a meal prepared with the very ingredients you saw growing in the fields will taste even more delicious. Standout eateries committed to bringing local bounty to your plate—and, in some cases, your cocktail glass—include Lure Fish House, Onyx Bistro, Sheila’s Place Wine Bar & Café, SLATE Bistro & Craft Bar and Twenty88. You’ll savor every bite knowing how much love, labor and sunshine went into bringing the ingredients from the farm to your table.