Sunday, May 17, 2009

shoot thinning

Finished the shoot thinning of Vidal Blanc, and just in time! Any more time and the shoots would have been too set to easily remove from the cordon. We were able to do the job by simply plucking the extra shoots by hand, a much easier and faster task than using clippers to remove them.
The earliest varieties (Seyval Blanc, Vidal Blanc) are in the late stages of inflorescence development. An inflorescence is the part of the shoot that develops into the grape cluster. It contains dozens of little buds that will open into tiny flowers.
I anticipate next weekend to be the last one before most of the varieties begin to flower.
The new vines in lot 12 are doing great! It's been a wet spring with frequent rain, giving these vines a chance to grow and develop a root system. The uncut rye grass hides most of these vines. In fact, the whole field looks like a green savanna with posts. Rarely is a vine taller than the grass around it. The rye is not terribly thick, though, so a dappled light makes it through to the vines. I expect by mid summer the vines will start peeking out over the rye.

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