The 2014 McLaren Vale Pruning Champion was crowned last Friday. The final
proved to be a match race between the 2013 McLaren Vale winner Gurideep Singh
who works for PI Contracting and Jeremy O'Donald from J&J Vineyard who was
fresh from being awarded the Wolf Blass shield for the Winner of the Vine
Pruning Championship of South Australia. The last five McLaren Vale
competitions have been won between both of these gentlemen so each knew what
they had to do to win.
The two lined up to prune 4 panels of vines at the Willunga High School as
quickly as possible. Once completed the judges Phil Rayner and John Petrucci
assisted by Derek Cameron checked the competitors pruning and applied a 5
second penalty for each mistake made. Mistakes consist of cuts that are not
flush or similar slight issues that affect the growth of the vine. Once the
judging and timing was completed it showed Guri took in 8 minutes, an
outstandingly quick time, with only 18 penalties which pushed Jeremy O'Donald
into the runner up position.
Event organisers Derek Cameron and James Hook said, “The fact is both of
these gentlemen are amazingly talented pruners. Jeremy is the South Australian
champion and Gurideep is a staggeringly quick pruner. He can spur prune a vine
in 45 seconds which is a speed that can’t be matched!”
As part of their prize
as winner and runner up DJ’s Growers has agreed to sponsor Guri and Jeremy in
future pruning competitions around Australia.
A question we get from time to time is how to control Onion or Guildford Grass (Romulea rosea) in pasture:
Note: this is not the same as Onion weed or Nut Grass (rarely seen in pasture, mainly undervine). Onion grass is a perennial herb with distinctive growth behavior. It looks like a grass, grows like an annual, and can spread rapidly . The plant not only produces abundant seed, but also corms underground to survive the hot and dry summers in Mediterranean environments of temperate Australia. Originated from South Africa.Generally found in areas with low competition from other perennial plants due to low fertility, overgrazing, fire or poor seasonal conditions. Causes:The two main causes of onion grass infestation are autumn bare ground and lack of competition from desirable pasture species. Prevention involves managing pastures to maintain above 70 per cent ground cover and maximising growth during autumn and winter. Make sure you have a high proportion of desirable perennial specie…