SANTA BARBARA COUNTY
Santa Maria
 


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.  Santa Maria Fields

When you visit the city of Santa Maria, you are bound to see fields. You might even catch the unique scent of broccoli or the sweet smell of strawberries grown locally. 
 
    Crops of lettuce, peas, corn, cauliflower, tomatoes, wine grapes and strawberries make their way to markets locally as well as being shipped to hungry consumers world wide. What's so special about the local crops?
 

  
© Debbie Stock

One advantage to having fields located outside your door is that you can purchase fresh foods and flowers directly from the farms. Another benefit is the growing season never ends. With temperatures seldom falling below the freezing mark, fields are worked all year long. When the signs are up, people stop to purchase strawberries, apples, tomatoes, corn and other vegetables. Some local farms even allow you to pick your own strawberries and tomatoes.  

 

heritage sign field pea pods
 

Or you can go to the Farmer's Market which offers seasonal produce and colorful blossoms every Tuesday at Oak Knoll South in Orcutt from 10:00 am to 1:00 PM. Wednesdays from 1-5 p.m. you can shop at Heritage Walk, Town Center West.  It is located near the corner of Broadway and Main Streets. 

While restaurants abound, locals do their share of home cooking, taking advantage of the freshest foods available..  Pictured is a crop of the sweet pea pods, used as a delicacy in Chinese dishes. Unless you dine at restaurants which purchase their foods directly from the fields, you'll never know how good these pea pods can taste. Men working the field sang and smiled as they dropped pods into the long, cylindrical buckets stationed next to them.