Two Tips for Timing Your Visit

(Above: Timing can be everything when visiting Westchase District Farmers Market to ensure you get what you want.)

(Above: Timing can be everything when visiting Westchase District Farmers Market to ensure you get what you want.)

Go Early, but Not Too Early.

The best stuff goes fast. A farmer may only have a single flat of ripe, juicy blackberries or a couple of pounds of fresh green peas, so arrive early to make sure you get the best pick of the market’s high-demand, seasonal fruits and vegetables. Take care, though, not to go too early: some markets disallow sales prior to the official hour and the sale you ask the farmer to make early may very well slow down set-up thus reducing the sales she or he can make later.

Or Go Late, but Not Too Late.

Farmers may discount their produce toward the end of the day. No one wants to cart a half case of unsold tomatoes or peaches back to the farm where they have row after row ready for another harvest. If your budget is tight, attending late may yield the best deals. Sometimes, farmers discount their produce as much as 20% by the end of the day just to get it sold so they don’t have to take it back to the farm. Of course, the rules and regulations of some markets actually disallow this sort of end-of-the-day blowout pricing, so keep that in mind if you’re late to arrive. Keep in mind that you shouldn’t expect this kind of discount, or ask for it; rather, be aware that it is a practice that some farmers use.