They're finally here.  And boy do they look plump juicy and mouthwatering.  Strawberries!  They're everywhere.  

Dave here, and this morning on the radio we took the Valley to Strawberry School because there's so much to know.  And in case you skipped class, here's what you missed...

Although picking has been light as farmers search for the best berries, our crazy warm, dry winter (Did he say WINTER?) has moved the strawberry season up a bit...about 2 weeks early thanks to that winter we never had.

Michael Yang of the U of C Cooperative Extension says, "We have a few stands open already and in about a week everyone will be harvesting.  And once they are, you'll find berries everywhere."

Many Valley farmers grow the Chandler variety, a strawberry known for its sweet taste but with a limited shelf life.  Others produce the Albion, sturdier and better suited to the Valley's hot temps.  Some start with the Chandler and then harvest the Albion later in the season.  And, unlike large-scale growers from the Central Coast who supply the grocery store chains, many Valley growers run those many road side stands which seem to pop up everywhere at this time of the year.

So, where to find the best berries?  Class!  Are you listening?  Fresno County puts together a map listing all the strawberry stands (as well as restaurants, other fruit stands, etc.) which you can find at gofruittrail.com. 

Strawberries!  Mmmm!  DaveT