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Mild Winter Bumps Up Harvest Times

  

Dan Best has been coordinating the Sunday farmers market in Sacramento since 1980. He says shoppers won't be disappointed by the array of flavors stocked in stands this year.

"We're seeing our local strawberries come in almost five weeks early," says Best. "I've never seen them come in this early."

He says asparagus was for sale three weeks earlier than normal, and he expects an early tomato and corn harvest as well.

Best predicts tree fruit like apricots or cherries could also be slightly early -- maybe a week to ten days.

But, farmers will be on edge through the spring because a cold spell or a frost could wipe out an entire crop. 

The drought also weighs heavily on farmers because crops are thirstier when it's warmer.

The short term forecast calls for highs in the seventies and low eighties in the Sacramento region.