20 March, 2017

Pleurs in the vines

No doubt, les pleurs is here.

Pleurs mean tears. This liquid is the sap of the plant regaining its fluid form, rise and move up inside the branches to eventually wake up the buds, that will begin to grow.

We know the sap is back as it flows from the spots where branches have been removed when we pruned.

It is also the sign to speed up attaching the branches because in some weeks the buds will visibly grow bigger and it will be harder to attach without breaking them. Read more about here (the 2016 report).

But it all depends on temperatures. They stay around 13 degrees in the days and colder at night. Sunny days may even send us 16 degrees celsius. People with bare legs and t-shirts have been spotted in town. In the countryside, it's cooler.

Pleurs is back. It really is springtime in the vineyards.

09 March, 2017

Finished pruning

This is what it looks like everywhere in our plots.

Since a few hours ago.

Pruning began with prepruning in October.

Now we're through for this season. The scissors will rest at least until November. Nice.

The pruning is crucial for the health of the plants, for the quality of our grapes.

So we pay attention to the quality of the work done.

But... you know, even so, it's still long and it's great when we're done. Every year.

Bring out the bubbles :-)

26 January, 2017

Freeze fits feeding the soils

Profiting from the cold.

The ground is frozen. It's great times to spread fertilizers.

We do it with this little machine, very handy to pass all over the plots, next to the vines.

Organic fertilizers
As the fertilizers are organic, we can spread them already now.

Obviously, the idea is that they'll be ready for the benefit of the vines as these will enter their growth period in some months. Thus we don't feed the vines directly, but rather nourish the soil, and then this is where the plants will find what they need for growth and maintenance.

As organic manures decomposit much slower - 90 days - compared to conventional - 30 days, the time schedule is also different. It basically means that organic products can be spread much earlier.

To fit with analysis
Alain choses the manure in order to fit a soil analysis of each plot the best possible way.

The manure is natural, and this means that your choice is not à la carte. You go for what will fit your need better from what is available.

In our case, we have opted for guano for quite a few years now. Basically it's bird excrements, and it surely smells like it for quite some time after the spread.

But the smell is not for long, and it seems to satisfy the need. Our plots are all healthy according to the lab that measures their composition. One good thing done then.