Posted inBusiness, Coloradans, Economy, News, Wildfire

Grape disappointment: Colorado vineyards say an October freeze will chill their 2021 vintage

The grape vines lined up in rows throughout the Grand and North Fork valleys look promising for a 2021 vintage with their usual winter-brown foliage bunched neatly on trellises. But cut into a bud, or scrape a stalk, and there are hints of the underlying damage done by a severe late-October freeze. An estimated 70% […]

Posted inBusiness, Coloradans, COVID, Environment, News

A bitter freeze and coronavirus have sprouted big problems for Palisade’s peach season

Palisade-area fruit growers were out in their orchards the frigid night of April 13 and into the next morning, frantically cranking up wind machines, turning on irrigation water, and lighting burn barrels in last-ditch efforts to save crops from a bud-killing Canadian cold front that crept across Colorado’s premier peach country. But none of those […]

Posted inBusiness, Coloradans, COVID, Health, News, Politics and Government

Colorado growers face “risk like we have never faced before” as coronavirus puts up labor walls

Like nearly all farmers, David Harold is well used to uncertainty. He grew up in his family’s Olathe-based business, Tuxedo Corn, steeped in the inevitable risks tied to weather, shifting markets and labor problems. But he is rattled to his roots by the risk posed by the novel coronavirus pandemic. “The amount of risk we […]

Posted inBusiness, Coloradans, Culture, Environment, News

An early freeze loomed for Colorado’s grapes, but wine drinkers’ evolving taste is the real threat

It’s grape harvest season in the Grand Valley, and that means it’s time to ponder an emerging wine-country dichotomy. Vintners were recently scrambling to save their grapes as an early freeze settled in and temperatures plunged into the low 20s. But, in the next few months, some of these same growers will be struggling to […]

Posted inBusiness, Coloradans, News

In the age of “go back where you came from,” Palisade carries on tradition of thanking orchard workers before they leave

Francisco Pacheco is in his 39th year working the peach orchards around Palisade. He was 17 when he first took a bus from his home in Sonora, Mexico, to join a seasonal crew pruning, thinning and picking peaches. He is about to wrap up a year that has been particularly tough because of sweltering heat […]

Posted inBusiness, Coloradans, Culture, Environment, News

Peach growers are expecting an all-time bumper crop on the Western Slope, but there’s one problem

The plink and plop of tiny green peaches hitting the ground at a Talbott Farms orchard is the sound of exceptionally good news for Colorado fruit lovers. This season there have been no damaging freezes, no punishing winds and no bruising hail on the more than 500 acres of fruit trees at the Talbotts’ orchards […]