Saturday we spent the morning visiting a couple of vineyards and getting a status on how things are going. We'll use the visits to put together our work plans for the next month or so. We check on the health of the plants and look for any mildew or other problems. We also want to see how they are growing and how the weeds are. The final step is for Stefania and I to do a demonstration row. If one of us can't be on site when we send Jerry out, he'll at least have a row to look at to know what we want done.
First up was a small vineyard in Los Altos that we take care of for Big Basin Vineyards. This is the demonstration row after we've cleaned it up. Big Basin likes to have a single shoot on each spur and just one cluster on each shoot. That's what we've done here.
This is what the rows looked like before clean up. We will need to weedwhack again here. We'll wait though for another month or so to let the grass dry out. The plants are very healthy so there will be lots of thinning to do. We probably have a total of about 60 hours of work to do here in the next 6 weeks.
Stefania said she spotted the signs of an owl in the box we installed last year.
Our next stop was the Harrison Vineyard, also in Los Altos. We installed about 250 Syrah vines a few years ago. This will be the first year they get fruit.
The Harrison's are pretty independent and we just visit them every 2 months or so so they can ask questions. They take care of most of the maintenance themselves. I thought this fruit might make a nice Rose this year, but right now the vines look strong enough to contribute to the Haut Tubee blend.
Sunday Stefania went to Sacramento to see her sister graduate and I spent the morning at Chaine d'Or. There was a little work to do in the winery. Most of the morning though I was out gopher hunting in the vineyard. They are active now and it's a good time to find fresh tunnels. Chaine d'Or is the only vineyard we have now that hasn't had an owl family move in.
Today I'll be writing up the plan for the next 2 months or so. We'll be pretty busy!