Each year, around January 1, a miracle of Mother Nature occurs at a little strawberry farm in Oceanside. The “miracle” is not that the little hillside farm is still in business, surrounded by large shopping centers. The miracle is, since 1989, the farm has opened weeks before other California strawberries are ready for harvest.
The Williamson Farm consistently beats Mother Nature’s timing, according farm owner Judy Williamson. Global warming? Not according to farm manager Albino Guzman, who credits the warm winter microclimate in this part of coastal North County. He points out that most California strawberries usually harvest between March and August.
Guzman’s wife Angela, who manages the little red, playhouse-sized sales barn at the busy intersection of Vista Way and Ivy Road, believes her husband has something to do with the early arrival of the berries. “Albino plants with love,” she says.
The farm will sell strawberries on the corner lot and from a larger leased area near Cardiff’s Mira Costa College until the first week of July. In September, when most other farms are finishing their strawberry crop, Williamson’s will be preparing the soil and planting for next year.