Springtime in the Rockies
Springtime for Colorado farmers and ranchers means work! Whether it's getting fields ready for planting, ditches ready for water, or the all important calving, lambing, kidding or whatever season you find yourself knee deep in. This is the season where sleep becomes less and worry becomes more.
With decent snowpack and the early spring rains here in rural Colorado, we are hopeful for a successful harvest season. Coming off of such a stressful year full of drought and fires most of the region was hit hard when the hay market was so high and finding good quality feed for our animals was a struggle. Hopefully this year, with the help of the weather, as ranchers, farmers, and gardeners, we will make enough product to sustain our lifestyle. The concept of high-performance agriculture is key in understanding the importance of crop yields. How much you can produce within a given amount of land is essentially how efficient you are as a farmer. In today’s economy, being able to do things efficiently is as important as ever. You want to ensure that you are maximizing your space and the land you have worked to cultivate. Crop yields not only determine your efficiency, but your bottom-line as well (A Farmers Guide). Whether you're planting several acres or getting ready to plan your backyard garden consider some of these helpful tips for high elevation farming and gardening:
Plant Early, Plant Effectively.
Practice Seasonal Soil Rotation.
Know The Yield Potential.
Ensure Proper Water Drainage.
Test Your Soil.
Always Scout Your Fields.
Remember that the higher the elevation, the harsher the sunlight and the faster your plant's soil will dry out. Putting seedlings in a vented cold frame is an ideal way to help them adjust. You can give seeds that go directly in the garden a jump start by planting them under mulch. It’s always a challenge playing a game with the weather; however, with these few tips your fields or gardens will be bountiful when summer rolls around the corner (High Altitude Gardening).