Last week I went persimmon picking with my friend Basanthi and my daughter Rani to a persimmon farm right here in the middle of Silicon Valley.
Seriously, when I say this farm is smack in the middle of Silicon Valley, it really is! The farm has been here long before Silicon Valley and tech companies started building all around them. Today it is the only farm in the middle of hundreds of tech companies right off Hwy 880 and Montague Expwy – which is a funny sight to see!
My friend Basanthi knows about this local gem as she used to work in one of the tech firms near the farm. It seems the persimmon farm has been there for decades and has been a fixture for all the tech workers to stop by on their way home to pick up persimmons in the fall, and fresh veggies and fruits all year round. Tech workers have been coming to the persimmon farm for so long that the farm stand cashiers know a lot of them by name.
Like anything taken for granted, I never bothered to stop by the farm as I was getting my supply of delicious fruit from Basanthi on a regular basis. But the day came this year when Basanthi informed me all upset that the persimmon farm got sold to a developer who is planning on building a condo complex and will be getting rid of those gorgeous persimmon trees. So this year I asked Basanthi if I could tag-along to pick persimmons.
The story of the owners.
Basanthi has been stopping by this farm for twenty years and basically can write the owners life story. A Japanese couple brought persimmon seedlings all the way from Japan and planted them here, managed, and worked the land themselves for over 40 years until the day came when they couldn’t manage it on their own.
They passed the baton on to a younger couple to work the land, live in the guesthouse on the property, manage the farm, and keep any proceeds from the fruit they sell.
For years they got offers to purchase their land but they always turned them down. But now that the younger couple are themselves older and their children have moved on to work at the tech companies in the area, there isn’t anyone else to pass the farm onto and manage, so the owners who are now in their 90s finally sold their persimmon farm to a property developer this year.
A persimmon farm like no other.
On the day that we stopped by, the trees were dripping with thousands of persimmons!
Fresh-picked persimmons being dropped off for the customers.
Took a picture with the sweet lady at the farm-stand.
Walked around the farm exploring what end-of-season crops were still growing and discovered large patches of raspberry bushes.
Picked one or two raspberries to taste which were the sweest berries ever!
I bought over 100 persimmons on this day!
Mailed about 25 persimmons to my sister in Philadelphia. Gave over 50 persimmons to all of my twin’s teachers for Thanksgiving. Who knew such a humble gesture of farm-fresh persimmons would make teachers so happy? We got so many emails thanking us for the delicious persimmons. One teacher even took her bowl of persimmons to the East Coast! She said her whole family cut them and added them to their Thanksgiving fruit salad and they absolutely loved it!
Kept a bunch of persimmons for us to enjoy. Used them as gorgeos Thanskgiving decor as well.
Farm-fresh persimmons from a farm smack in the middle of Silicon Valley? Now that is definitely a novel experience. We only have one more year to enjoy these luscious persimmons as we found out the farm will be cleared out for condos at the end of 2019. Persimmon farm in Silicon Valley is definitely an off-the-beaten path farmer’s market experience.
The farm is right opposite Cadence Design Systems on 2620 Seely Ave, San Jose. They are open Monday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday from 12-6. They are closed on Tuesdays.
Tsukuda Farm Stand
2620 Seely Ave.
San Jose, CA 95109