After a warm winter, March has come in with more than three weeks of freezing night time temperatures. We can be thankful that none of our buds have pushed. Otherwise, we would have some serious problems.
We expect to be finished pruning by the end of this week and will be tying by mid next week, just in time to avoid knocking the buds off when we tie to the trellis system. Budding out this early will cause us to have a prolonged frost season. More rain would help protect the crop. At high moisture levels, frost damage is less severe. It still makes for a long time to be on call for frost protection.
Our grapevines are on the fast track. We’re about four weeks ahead of schedule so we’re starting shoot removal, hedging, leaf removal, and spraying for mildew control. Irrigation is on our minds this year. We will make it but we do have a water crisis and we really need rains this coming winter. Supplies are low and wells are producing less.
Harvest 2013 started a few days ago with the picking of a little Pinot Noir and Chardonnay for Sparkling Wine. The past few days, we’ve been picking Valley View Sauvignon Blanc and Pinot Grigio in Los Alamos. There are many variables in each year’s harvest and the most difficult thing is having the patience to wait until a grape is at the point of perfection.