Springtime in the Vineyards! (VIDEO)
Since December, we have been grooming Clos de la Tech’s vineyards for optimal production of exactly the kind of harvest we want. With last year’s leaves and fruit gone from the vines, and the initial pruning complete, we can really see the “bones” of our vineyards. During the winter months, we removed excess wood and any vines that are damaged. Now, as the new shoots emerge, we remove those that aren’t ideally positioned, and we tie the remaining vines to supports that will provide the best air and sun exposure for the developing leaves.
These fresh new canes will bear this year’s fruit. We also prune with the developing leaf-cover in mind. We will leaf strip the morning side of the grape cluster area of the vine to allow as much sunlight on the grapes as possible, but we will leaf strip the sun side only 75%-80% to prevent direct sun damage. Leaf Stripping also helps reduce disease pressure.
In a way, preparing a vineyard for the future harvest is like doing a jigsaw puzzle without being able to see all the pieces – you have to do some highly educated guessing about how the growth will develop and what changing weather conditions might mean.
But it’s a wonderful moment in the life of a vineyard – the sharp, almost electric-green of the new shoots stands out against the misty grey color of the grapevine trunks, softening the geometry of horizontal and vertical vines that follow the contours of our steep hillsides. From now until the harvest, we will be hand-tending every little bud across all these hilly acres, as part of another year in our quest to make the New World’s best Pinot Noir.
Watch this video to learn more about leaf stripping!
Clos de la Tech Pinot Noir is currently available for purchase here.