About Us

The Western Colorado Research Center is comprised of two sites:

Orchard Mesa Site

The Orchard Mesa site is located 7 miles Southeast of Grand Junction. Site elevation is approximately 4750 feet with an average growing season of 182 frost-free days. The research conducted at this site includes tree fruits, wine grape production, and ornamental horticulture. This site has separate climate controlled greenhouse, as well as office and laboratory facilities.

A history of fruit growing in western Colorado.


Research Programs

Pomology – Ioannis Minas, PhD
Enology – Stephen Menke, PhD
Viticulture – Horst Caspari, PhD

Fruita Site

The Fruita site is located 15 miles northwest of Grand Junction. With an average growing season of 175 days at an elevation of 4500 ft, the reasonably deep loam soils at this location have been the home of the bulk of agronomic research conducted at the Western Colorado Research Center. Variety performance trials of new/improved varieties of alfalfa, beans and small grains have been an integral part of the research program at the Fruita site. The Colorado Dry Bean Foundation Seed Program is housed at Fruita.

A history of agronomic research in western Colorado.


Research Programs

Irrigation Water Resources – Perry Cabot, PhD
Integrated Cropping Systems – Reza Keshavarz, PhD

Rogers Mesa

Rogers Mesa Research Center re-opened in 2017 after being closed for several years. The site has nearly 80 acres of land, of which 65 are cultivable and most of it will be certified organic in 2018.  The proposed research foci at RMRC addresses organic agriculture with an emphasis on tree fruits, table grapes, wine grapes, organic seed production and greenhouse studies. The Rogers Mesa Research Center is located 3 miles west of Hotchkiss, Colorado with an average growing season of 125 days. The site elevation of 5,800 feet  represents high altitude fruit production of Delta County. The soil is comprised of mesa (loam), utaline (stony loam) and agua fria (stony loam) types.

Western Colorado Research Center – Orchard Mesa
3168 B 1/2 Road
Grand Junction, CO 81503-9621
Voice: (970) 434-3264
Fax: (970) 434-1035

Western Colorado Research Center -Fruita
1910 L Road
Fruita, CO 81521
Voice: 970-858-3629, ext. 2
Fax: 970-858-0461

Western Colorado Research Center – Rogers Mesa
30624 Hwy 92
Hotchkiss, CO 81419
cell- 970-250-7559
Fax: (970) 434-1035 (None on site – use Orchard Mesa)

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