ARTICLE BY: Kali McCrackin Goodenough
PHOTOS BY: Kali McCrackin Goodenough & Peggy McCrackin
Barbie Lytle has been working with C & R Farms for 30 years and coming to the Thursday Local Market since the very first market six years ago.
“I enjoy the people,” she says about working farmers’ markets. “Getting to know people, watching their kids and families grow, it is nice. I like watching little kids eat our fruit and the looks on their faces.”
C & R Farms is a third generation fruit farm out of Palisade, Colorado. It grows apricots, cherries, pears, apples, and of course peaches. C & R Farms grows 160 acres of peach trees and packs 70,000 boxes of peaches a year.
Palisade, a prolific farming community near the Utah-Colorado border, is famous for its peaches and with good reason.
“The soil has the perfect pH levels to grow peaches, which are an arid plant,” Barbie says. “The cool nights and hot days help them thrive. Peaches love heat.”
Barbie, who works farmers’ markets in Wyoming and the Front Range of Colorado, looks forward to this market, particularly because it is a beautiful escape from the heat.
“My favorite part of this market is the grass, the beauty,” she says. “In a very stressful part of my week, I look forward to coming up here, not only because it is ten degrees cooler, but because I can kick my shoes off and walk around barefoot.”
Barbie loves the relaxed, calm atmosphere of the market and the crowd it draws. It is a little slower paced than other markets, letting her chat with her customers and discuss the joys of such good fruit.
“I enjoy the joy that a quality product brings to the consumer,” she says.
The last few weeks, Barbie has had apricots and cherries, early season fruits, but peaches are coming soon!
“Peaches are everyone’s favorite,” she says. “Without a doubt.”
This week, swing by the C & R Farms booth to chat with Barbie and Connie, pick up the last of this season’s apricots and cherries, and perhaps sink your teeth into a juicy, new peach.