Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Flowering approaches

We are about to wind up for the day here at the vineyard, but before heading off, I thought a quick update was timely. The vines look great, and the weather is very settled, as you’ll see from this photo of my Airedale in the vines which as proud owner I’ll share with you.

But in thinking about today’s enjoyable weather, I am mindful that over a month ago I was boasting about how far advanced the vineyard was and that we were off to a flying start. Well, nature again has proved me wrong. We have had continuous and strong winds which have really knocked the vines about. The vineyard has gone from lush green to a dry brown in only a few weeks. While a little bit of wind is great, helping reduce disease risk, gales of 100km/h plus are certainly not.

The team has had to clean up branches from the wind-breaks, re-tuck vines we just tucked a few weeks ago and replace some wind-damaged trellising. Let’s hope things are a bit more settled from now on.

We hope for flowering next week, and want dry conditions with just gentle breezes. That combination will give us ideal flowering conditions, so fingers crossed. For interest I have included an image of a grape flower for you. As you will see, a pretty insignificant flower from which the magic nectar will flow!

In fact, if we have really good flowering, we may be faced with dropping some fruit to avoid the vines struggling to ripen more berries than they can handle. With the slowdown in growth we need to be careful we do not stretch the vines beyond their capacity. Always a tough decision, but it needs to be made early, so we don’t waste nutrition on grapes that won’t ripen.


  1. There is certainly some crazy weather right now. Looks like the wet stuff is arriving this weekend. Hope that isn't going to have a bad effect on the vines.

  2. Wet is not as bad as cold. Unfortunately both today (Sat 28 Nov) which is slowing everything down a bit. Plenty of time yet though.