Wednesday, October 6th, 2010...4:01 am
Pruning of the vineyard
This year I we pruned the vineyard a month earlier than usual, the reasoning behind this is that leaving this until the end of September means that we are forced to take the crop in earlier than usual if the March/April long rains come early. This year the grapes needed another week or two on the vines but we had wet mornings and reduced sunshine hours from the cloud cover so our fruit began to rot and we were forced to pick and then to chaptalize.
We took the Chardonnay back to one or two fruiting canes each with 10 to 15 buds with one or 2 renewals per vine. The Pinot Noir we I find tends to grow only from the terminal buds on the canes so they need to be cut back much shorter to get fruit. We put these between 5 and 8 buds maximum, 2 canes per plant and several renewals.
The buds were painted with the DORMEX as usual and two weeks later, we have a synchronised spring growth.
We were even fortunate enough to get a downpour last week of 40 mm which has given the vines just what they needed at this critical time. We are however laying out some drip pipe incase the short rains do not materialise. We shall wait and see.
The little clusters of flowers can just begin to be seen sprouting now. With some good rain in November we should have a successful crop if we can keep the mildews under control that is!