In the boom-bust cycle of the 1970s through the 1990s, the Grand Valley of Colorado saw landscaping become a burgeoning arm of the broader growth trade of construction. This business was especially robust in the higher elevations of the valley, a watershed spectacularly carved from the Rocky Mountains’ Western Slope by the Colorado River and its tributaries. There was money in this easternmost part of the Valley, at the nexus of liberal politics, wilderness, recreation, and celebrity. The town of Aspen is famous for its ski resorts but also for its dormant silver mines, intellectual symposia, festivals, iconoclasts, cosmic property values. (The median home price in Pitkin…