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      Pumpkin harvest arrives early

      H undreds of pumpkins fill th e field at Pond Hill Farm in Harbor Springs waiting to be picked. It's a sign to many that fall is here. But don't let the pumpkins fool you -- they are growing faster than usual.

      " A lot of times , this time year not all the pumpkins are fully matured . Y ou ' ll have 25 - 30% of them that are still green and developing. Right now there are probably 95% mature pumpkins," Pond Hill Farm Owner Jimmy Spencer said.

      I n Petoskey at Coveyou Farms, they say it's one of the best harvests they've seen in recent years. They say it's because the pumpkins grow faster in the hot summer heat.

      "W e ' ve had the moisture we need, we've had the heat and all the way around we've got some of the nicest sized, nicest quality pumpkins that we've been able to grow in the last a half-dozen years," Coveyou Farms Owner David Coveyou said.

      A t some farms in Northern Michigan, pumpkin patches are growing three weeks ahead of schedule which means the fun family activities everyone loves to enjoy may come a little early

      " It's great when we go to the field with our hayride and allow consumers to go pick any pumpkin in the field . T he y are going to have a great challenge to figure out which pumpkin to pick because they're so many good ones out there ," Coveyou said.

      F armers are welcoming this early sign of fall and they hope that it gives famil ie s a few more weeks to enjoy the season.

      " You know, hey it ' s going to be an early fall , but fall ' s one of the nicest times of the year so I think everybody should enjoyed it and buy pumpkins earlier and decorate their house and let's have a great fall ," Spencer said.