14741 Canyon Road Paonia, Colorado 81428 Google Map 970-379-9280

Austin Family History

Glenn & Tony Austin

Farming has been the Austin way of life for many generations.  It began in the 1700s when their ancestors were granted land in Tennessee for serving in the military during the Revolutionary War.  Surviving the Civil War, two World Wars, the Great Depression and other climatic hardships has made their family more determined to inhabit and continue to improve the land. From the beginning, their focus has always been on sustainability. There were always animals and home gardens to provide for the family's daily needs and cash crops such as cotton and sweet potatoes.  The original land in Tennessee continues to be farmed by Austin family relatives.

In 1970, Glenn and Tony Austin moved their young family, including 4 children, out west and landed in North Fork Valley.  They began by renting and working other growers' orchards, raising cattle and working in the local coal industry, apple processing and bottling operations.

Family friend Jean VanDuzen partnered with them in 1993 to begin their own orchard and plant the first phase of their 7000 fruit trees.  She had spent her career in medicine serving the needs of those living on the Indian reservations in the Tuba City, Arizona area.  Along with being one of the few female doctors during her time, she pioneered research and development in the area of health and nutrition for children.  She fell in love with the North Fork Valley during a rare trip away from her medical practice and purchased land there for her retirement years.  She brought a passion for natural, sustainable farming and joined with the Austins to create what is now Austin Family Farm. Jean stayed heavily involved with the farm until her passing in 2012 at the age of 86. She especially loved her time in the blackberry patch right out her back door.

Apples, peaches, nectarines, cherries, plums and apricots were part of the original planting.  Over the years the Austins have continued to expand, develop, rotate and fine-tune a variety of crops to produce great-tasting, nutritionally dense, naturally grown fruits and vegetables.  They pay special attention to sustainable growing through soil and pest managment programs. 

During the Winter, you will find Glenn and Tony attending agriculture events, training others and researching the trends in the growing industry. They love to share their passion for farming with others. Culinary students, school groups, interns, upcoming organic growers, produce retailers and families are often found touring the farm and joining in the activities.


Greetings from Mountain Freshies! August 26th, 2019

We are mid-way through our Farm-to-Family Harvest Box season, so we thought it was a good time to touch base and provide a few updates!  The cool, wet weather this spring delayed harvests an

Contact UsJuly 5th, 2019

For  questions about our Farm-to-Family Harvest Program (outside the Roaring Fork Valley) please contact: Christina Hannon-Smith, Mountain Freshies 970-471-4416 info@mountainfreshies.co

Photo(s) added: June 15th, 2019

New photo added:

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We look forward to sharing our harvest with you!

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