Charlie’s U-Pik is part of many people’s summer traditions. The farm started in the ’90s when Mr. Charlie planted too many tomato plants and advertised in the paper for people to come pick them. There are two locations of the U-Pik farms, one in Lucedale (the original) and a second location in Wiggins. Lucedale is a 100-acre farm and serves the Leakesville, Meridian, and Mobile, Alabama area. The Wiggins farm is 50 acres and serves the Mississippi Gulf Coast, Hattiesburg, and Louisiana.
Both locations offer favorite Mississippi spring and summertime staples such as tomatoes, watermelon, sweet corn, peppers, cantaloupe, and more. How U-pik works is you can pick your own produce for $12 per five-gallon bucket. If picking your own produce is not for you, the farm also offers a wide variety of already picked items for purchase.
U-Pik veggies planted for the 2022 season include:
- Beans, Green & Speckled Butter
- Beans, Snap & Pole
- Beans, Lima Ford hook & Christmas
- Cucumbers, Slicing and Pickling
- Onions, Red, White and Yellow
- Peas, Pink Eye Purplehull & Crowder & Silver Skin Crowder
- Peppers, Bell
- Peppers, Specialty: Gypsy, Hot Banana, Sweet Banana, Long Hot,
- Cayenne, Poblano, Anaheim, Cubanelle & Jalapeno
- Potatoes, Red & Gold
- Squash, Yellow
- Tomatoes, Round & Roma
The summer season usually lasts from Memorial Day through July 4. The season also depends on weather and crop availability. U-Pik recommends bringing your own five-gallon bucket for picking. It is important to wash your picking buckets with warm soapy water prior to each use. Eating in the fields, littering in the fields, and bringing pets is not allowed.
U-Pik is closed on Sundays, when the summer season starts, they will be open 6 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Saturday. There is no official opening date for picking yet but be sure to check out their Facebook page for updated information.
All photos courtesy of Charlie’s U-Pik