The above picture was taken late February. It shows the status of the vineyard…the vines are pruned and tied, vines marked for removal or grafting with either green tape or a grow tube, extra water line installed (not pictured), clover is finally growing after a very dry winter but no wildflowers (rows marked with a flag had expensive wildflowers sewn in last fall). Still have work to do but this post will show the work in our 5th leaf for Turtle Vines and I will update it throughout the year.
Jan 28 Pruning 45 hrs (all hired)
Feb 17-21 Tie Canes 9
Feb 25 Cane chipping/2nd drip 14 (8 hired)
Total to date 68
Hot, hot and more hot!!! We started July with 90+ weather for the first 5 and probably 6 days…..it even got to 98 on July 3rd.
There was a report in the paper that the number of days above 90 will double by 2025 and will hurt the premium wine industry in Sonoma/Napa. I’m hoping that with our close spacing and planting 42 degrees from N/S we will be in better shape than most vineyards…..at least that was the original plan……quality and planning for the future!
Since it was a holiday weekend, we did some quiet work……tying vines. I’ll hopefully mow for one of the last times on the 5th and then fertilize the 2 sections on the east end of the property later this week. My guess is that about 1/2 of the vines are now cut to 3’……hopefully the rest will get there in the next month since they stop growing soon.
July 4 – 4 hours tying
July 5 – 4.3 hours tying/mowing
July 6 – 2 hours tying/pruning
July 7 – 1 hours tying/pruning
July 12 – 6 hours tying/mowing/fertilizing (Sections 1,2 and 4 only…..3 is doing well)
July 13 – 1 hour fertilizing
July 14 – 1 hour with wine maker
July 26 – Watering 3 hours each section
Just thought I would give you a little update on the work….how many hours this little vineyard project is taking in it’s second year. In June I’ll be doing some pruning to increase the lateral growth in preparation for next year. Can’t wait…..not as much weeding and more technical work!
January 62 hours 66
February 6 0
March 4 0
April 32 18
May 47 24
June 36 23 (2 hours from Clint/Linda!!!)
Total 187 131
Doug is at 59%…..business plan is for 40%, so I’m doing OK so far. However, a lot of work is set for June….pruning, weeding, adding mulch/compost for weed control and to add organic matter to the soil.
Here is June so far:
June 2 – 2 hours weeding/thinning
June 4 – .25 hours pruning lesson from John Mason
June 6 – 4 hour pruning/weeding/weed whacking/plumbing front vineyard
June 7 – 2 hours plumbing front vineyard
June 8 – 7 hours weeding/weed whacking – 21 hours hired
June 11 – 3 hours piping/barking
June 12 – 2 hours barking
June 13 – 7.5 hours weeding/mowing/weed whacking/barking
June 17 – 1 hour pruning, 2 hours Clint/Linda pruning
June 20 – 1 hour pruning
June 24 – 1 hour pruning
June 29 – 3 hours pruning/mowing
June 30 – 2 hours pruning/mowing
Well, 2011 has been a very good year so far for the vineyard. For the first 6 weeks of the year we have seen snow storms in most of the country and here in Sebastopol is has been mostly warm and dry (rains are back this week). And as they say in the farming business……”Make hay while the sun shines”. So if you have read any of the other posts….I have been getting the vineyard in shape for the year. Here is the summary of what I have done this year.
Weed whacking 11 hours
Mowing 4 hours
Flaming 5 hours
Removing grow tubes 12 hours (8 of which I hired)
Hand weeding 69 hours (40 of which I hired)
Collecting weeds 13 hours (4 of which I hired)
Pruning 14 hours (all hired)
I didn’t count going to the dump as that is fun!!!…….so 62 hours for me and 66 I hired. About right….I want to do 30-50% of the work.
So you ask….what is next?
– Have to keep the vineyard in good shape by flaming/weeding and mowing.
– Replace vines that did not grow last year or that the gophers ate
– Plant Joey’s Sauvignon blanc vineyard in the front
– In March we start “Juicing” the vines….otherwise known as fertilizing
– Tying the vines up as they grow in April thru August
– Gohper trapping
– Install fruiting and canopy wires
Some pics below of the rows after flaming and yesterday with the rain.