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Best California In-Season Fruits for the Summer

Best California In-Season Fruits for the Summer

Delight in California's summer bounty! Discover the most delicious in-season fruits from the Golden State. Taste the sunshine today. Team


2 min read

June 08, 2023

California – the Golden State known for its sunny weather, lush landscapes, and an unparalleled agricultural bounty. Often synonymous with innovation, this west coast gem boasts a diversity of fruits that bloom under its radiant summer sun. During summer, markets are replete with the vibrant hues and sweet scents of the in-season offerings that make Californian produce an annual delight.

California has long dominated the national plum growing industry.

Luscious Stone Fruits

Perhaps the most anticipated summer arrivals are the stone fruits. Famously grown in the fertile soil of California's Central Valley, stone fruits such as peaches, apricots, plums, and cherries abound from June through September. Each fruit delivers a unique burst of summer: peaches with their velvety skins and juicy flesh, plums with their sweet yet tart notes, apricots with their rich, honeyed flavor, and cherries that bring the perfect balance of sweet and sour. Fun fact: Did you know California grows over 90% of the U.S.'s plums and 70% of the country's cherries?

The Valencia orange is a signature fruit in California.

Sublime Citrus

Although California's citrus season is traditionally winter, there's one standout that extends its presence into the summer: the Valencia orange. Known as the "summer orange," the Valencia is perfect for hot days as it's juicier and sweeter than other varieties. Named after the city in Spain, Valencia oranges made their way to California in the mid-19th century and became a staple for the state's citrus industry.

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Marvelous Melons

California’s warm summer climate also yields an impressive variety of melons. Watermelons, cantaloupes, and honeydews – the Golden State's melon triumvirate – ripen in the long, hot days from June to August. Watermelons, with their refreshingly sweet flesh, become a summer staple for picnics and barbecues. Equally enjoyed are cantaloupes and honeydews, with their unique aromatic sweetness. California's Imperial and San Joaquin Valleys are famous for their melon harvests, with the former even hosting an annual melon festival in August.

Berries are some of the most versatile fruits, able to enhance pastries, entrees, or beverages.

Beautiful Berries

The jewel tones of California’s berries are irresistible come summer. Strawberries, raspberries, blackberries, and blueberries all reach their prime in the summer months. Strawberries, in particular, are a significant crop for California, producing over 80% of the strawberries consumed in the U.S. They offer a sweet-tart balance that makes them versatile in everything from salads to desserts.

You might not be familiar with figs, but the summer months is a great time to get acquainted with the underrated fruit.

Exquisite Figs

A less conventional but nonetheless delectable summer fruit is the fig. California’s fig season starts in June, and the state grows 100% of the nation's dried figs and 98% of the fresh figs. These sweet, nutrient-dense fruits have a rich history dating back to ancient civilizations and are a luxurious addition to any summer dish.

Indeed, California’s summer bounty is a testament to its agricultural prowess and diversity. The Golden State’s warm climate and rich soils provide a vibrant palette of in-season fruits that are as flavorful as they are beneficial for health. Whether you're biting into a juicy peach, savoring a sweet fig, or enjoying a slice of watermelon on a hot day, California's summer fruits offer a delicious, nutritious way to embrace the season.

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