April showers bring May flowers, but where are the showers? Last year we had seven inches of rain in April. This year we had none in March or April and it doesn’t look like we have any more coming. Grapes are not big users of water but they do need it.
The most important task that we do in the vineyard is pruning. This morning I was driving my 2004 Ford F-150, “The Dustmobile”, through two rows of grapevines, admiring the pruning job. What we do in January and February determines what kind of grapes we get in September and October
Spring is definitely upon us. Today is probably the warmest day of the year so far with temperatures in the upper 80’s. The vines are reaching for the sky thanks to the abundant rain and perfect growing weather.
Today we are experiencing the first truly hot day of the year. At Valley View, it peaked at 106°F for a few minutes To me, the vines are a little behind schedule although, with warmer weather, we might catch up. Right now, we are expecting harvest to be late August to the first of September.
We are very thankful for the rains received. The original forecast was for a quite dry winter. Our area is still considered to be one of the few slightly drought stricken areas, but the improvement has been remarkable
Harvest is well underway and a couple of weeks earlier than ever before. Our yields in some varieties, like Pinot Noir and Pinot Grigio, are unbelieveably low. Both bunch size and berry size are small. This situation is statewide, especially in the coastal regions. Everyone is questioning why.