Pruning in January
Looking good. Melissa and Robin decked out for pruning.
We started pruning this month. Pruning is a multi-step process. It starts with cutting off most of last year's growth, leaving just the canes and buds we want to produce next year. Then the old brush is pulled away, and the reserved canes tied to the fruiting wire. Typically during this phase, you will visit each plant three or four times, spending a total of about two or three minutes per plant. Doesn't seem like much until you multiply it by 13,000. It works out to be around 650 hours.
Winter Blast 2004
January 2004 brought some extreme weather conditions to northwest Oregon. Sub-freezing temperatures, snow, ice, and high winds combined to immobilize the region. We ended up with eight inches of snow topped with half an inch of ice at the vineyard. The thaw had started by the time we were able to get up to the vineyard and take this picture. The grapevines all seemed to come through it with no ill effects. The only casuality was a collapsed barn.
Before the storm hit we had started pruning. You may be able to see where the vines have been cut but we haven't pulled the cut canes yet. We'll let it thaw and dry out before we get back to pruning. We expect to be done by the end of February.