Thursday, May 25, 2017

Bud Break is a Bit Late 2017

So as of May 22 the vines are just budding out and are a bit late. Late is not much for our location as over the past 10 years the spectrum for bud break is usually between May 17-23. So we are a bit late but nothing to worry about as some good heat in June and the vines will catch up quick. So the Castel, Foch, Petite Milo have pushed buds furthest. Castel pictured Below;

Bud survival is good on all varieties which is nice as we had a 1 week stretch of about -21 to -23 celcius this past winter and even the Arrow Lakes froze over in parts - so we were not sure what spring would bring. Usually get just 1 day in around the -20 celcius range. The one exception was with the Leon Millot that we experimented with an 50% increased crop load (12 shoots per foot instead of 8 per foot). On these vines the canes died back significantly.

At spring pruning we usually leave extra buds until we know what the bud survival rate is and to ensure we get past a potential late frost. The photo above shows 2 canes bent over onto the trellis for long cane pruning and as you can see virtually all the buds survived and we have now made it past the point of any late spring frost. So we will now get back into the vineyard and shoot thin to the desired crop level for each variety.

Tuesday, May 16, 2017

New Vines Planted for 2017

Its been awhile since I've blogged but that is a function of how busy we've been this spring.  Our main objective was to get the new vines planted and we got that completed end of April - early May. We've now got 1.5 acre of vines. So we were up early befor the sun came over the mountains and were out to get the rows marked and holes drilled. We marked our rows and vine spacing and then augered a 3 foot deep hole for each vine. Early morning mist before the sun came over the mountain.

The rains came and went and we then got to planting and added 1500 row feet of Castel grapes and have them staked. Picture below is not great but the rows are there. This is a favorite of mine and not widely grown but if you've not had Castel then think of Pinotage with Cab Sav. So all we need now is warm weather to bring them along. Rows below;