Is it possible that we are just a few weeks from harvest? Yes! Time marches on and the vines have changed to a more mature color of green. The canes went from dark green to yellow and then brown, a good sign of maturity.
It is already February and all of the Italian variety vines have been pruned except Nebbiolo. We prune the Nebbiolo last because it breaks bud and comes out early and is very susceptible to frost. Late pruning delays the bud push.
Spring has sprung with a nice three days of rain which were badly needed. The rain really helps us for irrigation and frost protection purposes. All the vines have been pruned and tied and buds are beginning to open. It won’t be long before we are into spraying, shoot removal, and tractor work.
There was an article this morning in a wine journal with grape growers from all over California already seeing things beginning to happen in the vineyard. Early bud break usually tells you that you will have an early harvest. It also tells you that you will have a long frost season