Where Wine Makers and Grape Growers Share Their Knowledge


This is the year beginning January 1, 2003 which is the second growing year for my vines: 
My work is being journalized chronologically to assist in showing  the time frame from planting the grapes to the first harvest at least one year later.   This chronology is to show you everything I went through to get my first home grown batch of wine.

This year, I'll be pruning the vines back to 3 shoots in February, puting on the grow tubes in March/April, spraying for weeds, mowing and awaiting for the vines to reach the first wire.   I'll also be finishing off the trellis system once I can determine which cross arm or "Y" arm will best suit my needs and set up.

bulletBook - From Vines to Wines
bulletPruners - I recommend a higher quality over the cheap plastic ones
bulletTraining poles - I use fiberglass four foot electric fence rods
bulletBlue-X Grow Tubes VS another brand
bullet"Seven - 10" Herbicide to kill bugs
bullet"Roundup" grass and weed killer
January, 2003
I will be pruning the vines either the end of January or February of this year.   I'll do my best to explain which vines to cut, where and why.    The amount of growth this year should be simply amazing.  First off, last year, I put the vines in late (May).   I shorted myself out of at least 3 months of growing time.   I expect the vines to start budding by the end of March this year and easily hitting the 50" wire on my trellis system by early August if not before.

March 23, 2003
I had the lawn mower out at the vines and popped this pic when I finished mowing. 

April 18, 2003
Today I planted 6 Vignole vines from Double A Vineyards.    I pulled out 6 extra Concord vines, I used one of the best of those and replaced the one Concord that didn't look too healthy.  Also, as I had promised, I am trying a new grow tube style that Midwest Vineyard Supply had sent me.   It's a two piece snap together style which will make it easy to put on and remove.   We'll see how the two differ in their growth performance as I staggered the Blue-X and this orange snap together style.      

May 5, 2003
Today I just dropped by to take a look at everything.   We've been getting a lot of rain the last two weeks.  Here are some photos I snapped.    I can't tell if the bird is a Purple Martin or not.  I have a house for them out there.   Also, note that I have some grape clusters started on one or two concord vines and one catawba vine.

June 4, 2003
Today I just dropped by to see how things were going and I did see another purple martin in the house.    It appears that something has been eating about 4 of my vines which are closest to the shed.  I plan on sprinkling Seven-10 dust this week because I didn't see any deer prints.  Also,  more below on the grow tube comparison.
Also, here's the progress with my new Vignole vines I planted back in mid April, 2003.   The one on the left is using the Blue-X growtube.   The one on the right is a snap together 2 piece growtube.    I have found the snap together growtube to be much easier later on for pruning lower growth as the vine gets older and starts reaching the trellis wire.     

June 25, 2003
Today I just stopped by to see how things were coming along.  I sprayed just the other day to knock down the weeds along the rows.  I also added the cross arms for the "Y" style trellising I'm going to do.  Soon, I'll be adding the end brackets and finishing the trellis system.  More photos to come.



June 30, 2003
The trellis system is now complete!! 

July 10, 2003
Here is a photo of my attack guard birds.  I just put this purple martin house up back in March, and while this photo was being taken, there were eight - ten flying around the house.

July 27, 2003
Here is a photo of one of the vignole vines and the amount of Japanese beetles I have.   I've been applying Sevin-10 Dust to kill them but recent rains washes it off the leaves.  
August 15, 2003
Here is just a photo to show you the progress of the vines.   I sure wish it'd rain.   It hasn't rained in 3 weeks.
September 20, 2003
I removed the grow tubes and everything seems to be doing quite well for the season.   There were only a few vines that didn't grow like wildfire.   Also, the 6 Vignole vines I planted back in April are just as large if not larger than many of my other vines 2 years old.   One of the Vignoles has a small bunch of grapes.   



This is just how I did my vineyard.   You can do your vineyard any way you wish.   I am just offering this information to anyone who is interested in vines and wines.


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The trellis system is in place, and I now have the cross arms up.   I hope to finish the trellising by the first week of July.  

Grow tubes
I have been sent more grow tubes by another manufacturer and will  stagger the Blue X and this other style to see if there is any noticeable difference.  I'll let you know my findings and recommendations.


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