The McLean Farmers Market has opened for the season with a bountiful harvest of cold-weather crops. The market is held every Friday morning at Lewinsville Park from 8:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m. and features a variety of vendors from the area. The farm market is sponsored by the Fairfax County Park Authority and Green Spring Gardens, a county park.
At this time of year the market offers selected produce, cut flowers and gardening plants, baked goods, honey products and springtime treats such as asparagus and strawberries.
Gerardo Flores has been selling produce at the McLean Farmers market for a decade and says attendance keeps getting better and better every year.
“Right now we are selling a lot of lettuce. We have a lot of different things, but right now it’s cold-weather crops, like lettuce. But later we will have tomatoes and cantaloupes. More people come out for those things,” said Flores. “It gets busier then, when the tomatoes come in.”
Rhonda Stevenson sells more than 50 types of flowers and plants at the farmers market. “For me this is my busiest time. It’s because people are planting now,” said Stevenson. She keeps a loyal clientele by making a list each week of what her customers are looking for or what is selling out, and stocking up on that the next week. “I always make a list of what I’m supposed to bring for people,” Stevenson said.
Anna McDonald of McLean comes to the market each week for the “fresh-from-the-field” produce. “I prefer to come here for the vegetables I can get, rather than going to the grocery store. You can’t beat the freshness.”
Strawberries are the big draw at Mary West’s stand. “We’ve had a good strawberry year,” she said. In addition to the strawberries, she sells a lot of tomatoes that have been grown in her greenhouse. “We start them right after Christmas, so they are ready now,” said West.
She said that the vendors at McLean offer a nice variety of produce as the season progresses. Her stall, for example, will offer 30 types of tomatoes and 50 types of peppers this year. “It’s pretty much your basic stuff, but a huge variety,” said West.