Pruning Chronicles

Winters are pretty much quiet in the vineyards, very much like the dormant vines waiting for spring. As it’s impossible to get into the fields with a tractor because of the wet soil, only minimal activity, mostly involving manual labor, is done until the weather warms. But when the truck with the port-a-potty arrives, we…

Spring in the Vineyards

Buzz, Buzz, Buzz. As former beekeepers, we rushed outside at dawn – was it a swarm of bees landing on the deck?  But no, it was just the crew of vineyard workers with their noisy weed-eaters; another rite of passage in the vineyard in spring. A few days before, two vineyard workers had pushed huge…

Mud Room Chronicles

It’s always easy to guess what time of year it is just by looking at the collection of irrigation parts, seed packets and clothing piles in our back porch, or “mud room”. Last Saturday there were 2 pair of muddy boots outside the back porch on a step stool, and 2 pair of flip-flops, (the…

Harvest Wrap-Up 2011

Basking in 75 degree temperatures at the end of October, with a warm breeze blowing the fall leaves throughout the vineyard, it’s hard to vividly remember the worrisome fog, rain and cool weather and the problems it brought us last summer. Over 2 inches of rain in early June caused many of the flowering grapes…

Leaves at Harvest

This was going to be exciting and different – picking Sauvignon Blanc under lights in the middle of the night! Although night time harvests, with their spot lights lighting the sky as though it was a local football game, have been used in the Napa Valley for many years, we have never been part of…

Critters in the Vineyards

Living out in the country, seemingly miles from civilization with nary a neighbor in sight, we are always asked what critters we see in the vineyards. Yes, we did have a Brown Bear cruise though several years ago (he was more interested in the cat food and garbage bins than the grapes), and have even…