Friday, June 12, 2020

Renewal

I've mentioned that three large vineyard parcels out back have been torn up. One of them was home to the oldest vines one of our local wineries owned at over one-hundred years. For now, the dug up vine trunks are piled up. I assume at some point they will be hauled away.

Two piles of old vine trunks that have done their duty. New vines will take their place before long.

I'm speculating that the parcels will lie fallow over this coming season before they're plowed and re-planted next spring. I've seen a few new vineyards planted out back in previous years. After a parcel has been plowed and otherwise made ready, the grower rides on the back of a machine and feeds the small grape vines in. The machine plants them in the soil at a consistent depth and evenly spaced. After the planting is done, workers pound in stakes and string support wires.

The little vines come coated in a waxy substance as some kind of protection. The coating melts away after planting and the new vines soon sprout leaves. They don't form grapes for a few years, and I'm not sure how old they are when they're first harvested.

I'm glad to see growers around us reinvesting in their businesses. I know that many older properties have been sold or abandoned as growers retire without someone in the family interested in taking over. Like most agriculture, growing grapes and making wine is not an easy profession. I enjoy living in a wine region and being able to watch the growing and harvesting process from my back yard.

6 comments:

  1. I love the grape-growing tradition around you and am pleased it continues. I didn't know that about the coating on the new plantings. I always learn something new here.

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  2. Those piles make me think of Callie and her way of bringing home kindling when finding old vines.

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  3. I bet that would be amazing living in a place that produces wine. I would love that!

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  4. mitch, I've learned a lot about grape growing just watching. But I'm sure there's a lot more to it that I see.

    bettyann, :)

    sheila, Callie did enjoy doing that. Tasha picks up smaller sticks and runs with them for a short distance, but doesn't bring them home the way Callie did.

    michael, there are some VA wineries I remember in the area west of DC. Any near you?

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  5. I can imagine the land is more lucrative to sell for condos than to cultivate crops.
    Fingers crossed some folks continue on this way.

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