The Colorado Climate Center partnered with the Colorado Wine Industry Development board to create a map of Colorado areas best suited for viticultural exploration. Three major considerations for aspiring Colorado viticulturists are 1. Severity of cold winter temperatures (particularly in the late fall and early winter), 2. Soil texture, and 3. Access to irrigation water.
Updated Colorado Viticultural Exploration Opportunity Categorization using downscaled PRISM data 1981-2023. Shading based on locations experiencing an estimated average of fewer than two Low Temperature Injury Event (LTIE) years/decade using the table below.
|European Grapes||Hybrids||Hardy Hybrids|
|Type I||Tmin < 10°F prior to November 1st||Tmin < 8°F prior to November 1st||Tmin < 3°F prior to November 1st|
|Tmin < 5°F prior to November 16th||Tmin < 0°F prior to November 16th||Tmin < -6°F prior to November 16th|
|Tmin < 0°F prior to December 1st||Tmin < -8°F prior to December 1st||Tmin < -15°F prior to December 1st|
|Type II||Winter (DJF): Tmin < -8°F||Winter (DJF): Tmin < -13°F||Winter (DJF): Tmin < -22°F|
|Type III||Tmin < 28°F after May 15th, but before July 1st||Tmin < 28°F after May 15th, but before July 1st||Tmin < 28°F after May 15th, but before July 1st|
|Type IV||Preharvest: Tmin < 28°F after July 1st, but before October 1st||Preharvest: Tmin < 28°F after July 1st, but before October 1st||Preharvest: Tmin < 28°F after July 1st, but before October 1st|
Weather data in this study were from the Parametrized Regression on Independent Slopes (PRISM) Model developed at Oregon State University. Data resolution is 800m (~one half mile). Soil texture data used are from the Soil Survey Geography (SSURGO) dataset courtesy of US Geological Survey.
For more information on this project, please contact Peter Goble.