Monday, February 9, 2009

Cool weather helps vineyards - UPDATE 9/2/2009

The return of cool weather has given vines the opportunity to return to normal ripening. In some vineyards green berries have resume veraison and are colouring up. Vines with healthy, functional leaves should now move quickly to ripen their remaining fruit.
Berries convert acid into sugar and other metabolites like anthocynins (colour) and flavanols (flavour).

The vineyard, pictured above, in the Sellicks Foothills has shed berry weight and lost fruit to sunburn, but it is holding leaves and has potential to be A/B grade quality. The weather over the next two weeks will need to be gentle to allow the vines to 'return' to normal ripening.

If you are running low on water allocation, prioritise your water to look after high value fruit. Also post harvest water and fertiliser will be vital for next season, it is advisable to keep some water for that. If your vines are water stressed after picking this could cause poor dormancy and poor bud burst for next season. It is a juggling act.

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