Sunday, July 6, 2008

Young Oak Vineyards - Vol. 14: The Trellis's Are Up!!

Hi all,

Hope you all are enjoying a great 4th of July weekend! Having the summer off has allowed me to do a lot of projects at home, and we have made a lot of progress in the vineyard as well. We have finally put up the trellis wires and now you can see why we put the posts in at an angle, to pull against 75 feet of wire and eventually the weight of the fruit ladened vines! I must say, the vineyard is really taking shape!

Many vines have reached over two feet in height and a few are even four feet. Several vines have developed green, unripened grapes berries about one centimeter in diameter (that's 0.4 inches for you non-metric folk).

I had intended to use grow tubes to protect the grapevines from the critters, however, Ron of Vinescape suggested I just allow the grapevines to grow unpruned and unfettered, to allow the root system to fully develop over the first year. Generally speaking, the root system below the ground is about the same size as the foliage is above ground. To use the grow tube, you have to prune the grapevine down to only one shoot, which you would train up as the trunk of the vine. For this we will wait until the late Fall / Winter season when I will learn about pruning.

A couple of days ago, when I was working with a couple of my amigos, five deer came wandering into the vineyard under my neighbor’s deck. This answers my question of how these guys have been getting in and browsing on the grape leaves. Now that we have plugged that leak, hopefully we have eliminated our deer problem!

Keepin' it "Safe & Sane" in the vineyard!
John

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