The Croissant family has always had an agricultural legacy here in Colorado since the beginning of the 1900’s. The understanding and knowledge of growing on Colorado’s drought-prone soils was the key to our family’s existence. Some might say it’s just too difficult to grow anything in these arid soils. To us, after 5 generations, these Colorado conditions are all but normal.
John Croissant first came to Colorado from Russia at the beginning of the 1900’s. Like many new immigrants, he was set on making a new beginning and stake claim to the ‘American Dream’. He started on a 160 acre pioneer homestead just east of what is now the Pawnee National Grasslands. There were no fancy computer controlled sprinklers, GPS controlled tractors, or PHD accredited consultants. He adapted and lived off the land year after year no matter how good or bad the seasons were. This was the foundational principle was passed from one generation to the next.
Henry Croissant took what was learned from his father’s dry-land wheat farm and transitioned into growing with irrigated crops. At this time in the first half of the 1900’s, these new tools of technology, pumps, sprinklers, and motor-powered tractors helped changed the region. This meant doing more work with less effort.
Herbert Croissant understood that with great advances in farming technology, you could widen the possibilities of growing new styles of crop not normally tried on the Front Range. Potatoes, pinto beans, peanuts, soy beans, and corn were all but foreign to this region a hundred years earlier What made it possible to grow such crops in these barren fields was good water and rich organic compost.
Michael Croissant started by growing many exotic and award winning crop varieties with the family farm, he knew the key lay within the soil. After supplementing soil with compost, this allowed most crops to survive and thrive in an arid climate. So with this idea in 1978, he started an organic compost company called B.O.S.S. Compost. Whether you were growing native grasses or exotic flowers, all crops could adapt better to the climate if they had the balance of a healthy soil life. Good organic compost was the key to unlocking the plants’ true ability to grow.
Jack Croissant has been continuing with all that was learned four generations before him, unlocking the true potential of Colorado’s soils. Much like the third generation, the potential for growing new and un-tested crop varieties started with his organic vineyard. Growing French Hybrid, and classic Vinavera grape vines, has rooted hold in these Front Range soils for over three years now. The normally difficult and stress prone Bordeaux varieties have shown the best adaptation with help from compost enriched sandy soils. Many say, “That growing grapes on Colorado’s Front Range can’t be done”. They also said, “California was an unsuitable environment for growing grapes”, but now 200 years later California produces some of the best wine in the world. A lot of potential can be achieved in Colorado’s soils just by adding a healthy balance back into the native soil with compost.