Cycle in the vineyards

Winepeople know that all available days are needed and neccessary when wines are made. There is a long line of days and different work to be done in the vineyard when producing grapes for the wines. The active time in the annual cycle starts from pruning until the harvest is done and vineyard is cleaned.

Pruning - bud breaking – flowering/blooming – green/grape harvesting – veraison – harvesting, is the temporal sequence.

Pruning is a horticultural practice where selective parts of a plant are removed, like branches, buds or roots. 
Bud breaking happens when temperatures cause the buds on the grapevines to develop, break and bloom.
Flowering/blooming is the period of grape vines after bud break and it happens within two months. After flowering new small and green berries are formed and afterwards they enlarge to become grapes. There is a rule of thumb that vintage starts after 100 days of flowering.
Green/grape harvesting is a intervention where flavor quality and consistency in the grapes are improved by cutting down laves and removing green grape clusters.
Véraison is the time timespan when the color of the grapes changes during ripening, leading up to harvest.
Harvesting happens late August – Early September once grapes have reached their optimal ripeness. To start the picking is based on sugar level, pH (acidity), taste of the grapes and weather. During the harvest grapes are picked, sorted, crushed, pressed and fermented at the winery.

Amateur cracker pruning his wines in the Central of Finland, knowing that in real wine countries pruning has been done already on this side of the Equator. Maeby wineman gets his pleasure from bindings and growth of the vines?

Text: Heikki Remes
Photo: Eeva Remes

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