Agriculture & Natural Resources News:
Colorado is experiencing the effects of drought. Most of Garfield County currently falls within a Moderate to Severe Drought designation (as of May 22nd /2018). Not only does this significantly affect farmers and ranchers in the state, it can also have an impact on summer recreation and Wildfire risk.
It is important to be up-to-date on local regulations, burn permits, fire bans, water use restrictions, and resources.
Colorado Drought Summary: https://www.drought.gov/drought/states/colorado
Colorado Wildfire Risk Assessment Portal: https://www.coloradowildfirerisk.com/
Garfield County’s Wildfire Protection Plan: https://www.garfield-county.com/emergency-management/community-wildfire-protection-plan.aspx
Upper Colorado River Interagency Fire Management Unit: https://gacc.nifc.gov/rmcc/dispatch_centers/r2gjc/
Colorado Water Conservation Board: http://cwcb.state.co.us/water-management/drought
PURGE YOUR SPURGE
About Garfield County:
Garfield County is located in western Colorado and consists of Carbondale, Glenwood Springs, New Castle, Silt, Rifle, Battlement Mesa and Parachute. Garfield County has been experiencing steady population and economic growth. The 2014 population estimate is 57,461 and the median household income is $57,022 with $58,433 being the state average. Two percent fewer people live below the poverty level than the state average. The oil and gas industry has been prominent in Garfield County. Other major economic contributors are tourism and agriculture. The agriculture industry has seen an increased interest in small acreage and local food production. The agriculture industry has increased from 449 farms in 2002 to 625 in 2012. The farmlands cover 310,854 acres across Garfield County. The average farm size is 538 acres, with 25% of products sold being crops and 75% being livestock (cattle and sheep primarily). The communities in Garfield County have diverse economies, shopping opportunities and housing choices. The population is approximately 28 percent Hispanic. Garfield County is primarily rural, with 60% public land. Outdoor recreation opportunities abound, and include hunting, fishing, hiking, rafting, biking, skiing, and other activities typically associated with Colorado.
Colorado has a long and proud tradition of agriculture. Colorado State University’s College of Agricultural Science offers some of the premier research and ongoing opportunities for study and advancement in all aspects of agriculture.
Garfield County is no exception to this agricultural heritage. Beef, lamb, wool, pork, hay, oats, sod, bio-fuels, and more shape our community and economy. The Extension Office staff is proud to serve our local ranchers and farmers. From the largest of our historical properties to the smallest community garden plot, Garfield County is an agricultural region.
Garfield County Extension has programming to help support and strengthen the agriculture industry and heritage in Garfield County. Local foods, hay production, weed control and small acreage management are areas of focus. For further questions contact the Garfield County Extension office at 970-625-3969.