Thursday, February 19, 2009

Pruning The Vines

Our back yard is surrounded by vineyards whose grapes go into some fine Touraine A.O.C. wines. We also have a few old grape vines inside the yard. These are not wine grapes, however, but several varieties of table grapes.

Pruned table-grape vines in the back yard.

They are old vines, probably planted at the time the house was built in the late 1960s. When they were young vines, they probably produced wonderful crops of eating grapes. Since then, several large trees have grown up nearby, shading the vines and making any production quite meager.

What's left of the two rows.

Most years now, the few grapes that develop are quickly devoured by birds. Some of the vines have died, and I've yanked them out. The previous owner installed a nice set of posts and wires to support the vines year after year. At one time useful, they've lately become just a barrier across the yard and make it difficult to cut the grass around the vines.

Hazelnut row. It's time to start pruning all those little suckers around the trunks. Our yard is to the left of the green fence. On the right is a little stand of woods, then vineyards.

So, as the vines started dying, and a few have, I started yanking out the posts. On Tuesday, after I did this winter's pruning, I took out the remaining posts and wires, leaving just the surviving vines. As long as they live, they get to stay. But grapes do best in full sun, and we just get barely enough of that every year without the added burden of shade from tall trees. These grapes' days are numbered.


  1. It looks like you are keeping very busy while Ken is gone.

  2. I'm sure Shakespeare would have had something to say about that. But, unfortunately, they didn't have baguettes at the time.

  3. Just make some bread pudding out of the extra demie! What DID you end up deciding?


  4. nadege, not that I lack for stuff to do, even when he's here. ;)

    chm, wherefore art thou baguette?

    judy, I tell you in tomorrow's post...


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