Saturday, September 23, 2006

Potassium does a vine some good.

Things are winding up at the vineyard. Since the soils in my area are deficient in potassium, I spent the day putting down organic potash in the current vineyard and in the future planting locations. I applied the potash at a rate of ~5 lbs/ 100 vines. In the yet to be planted vineyard, I applied at a rate of 1 lb every 50 feet.(next years planting location)

Things still look fairly decent. The major problem appears to be some disease on the lacrosse. There are some mild powdery mildew infections throughout the vineyard, but nothing too major.

We did get nipped by frost in the lower South East corner. Maybe 6 vines got hit, but they are going to be retrained next year anyway.

Wednesday, September 13, 2006

2006 harvest is complete

The 2006 harvest at Sampson Valley Vineyard was complete Sunday morning September 10, 2006. After a very cold morning (about 40 F) I had a perfect day for picking grapes. (no pictures yet)

Only foch was ready to pick this year. There were a few handfulls of lacrosse, saint pepin, and landot noir, but not enough to make any wine. Nine of my nieces and nephews helped, along with several of my brothers and sisters. Many hands made fast work .... we picked all of the grapes in about 1 hour! It was only 260 lbs, still, we made very good time. (note the size of my harvest increased 20 fold over last year's "tolken" harvest.)

That evening I measured my sugar, and acid ...

Brix 19.6
PH 3.16
TA 11.6 g/L

Better numbers than I had thought. But not great.

Next year I expect to have a harvest 4 to 6 times the size of this year's.

Friday, September 08, 2006

Pre harvest readings

I took brix and acid readings on about 30 berries tonight. The brix was 18.6, the ph was 2.96, and the TA was between 1.1 and 1.2. Since cooler weather and rain is expected next week. I think I will harvest Sunday morning. (9/10/2006)

(note this was posted the following week.)

Sunday, September 03, 2006

Foch Not ripe yet

I checked the titratable acid, ph and sugar on Thursday August 31. The brix was 17.2, TA was 1.5-1.6 g/liter, and the ph was 2.82. Not ripe at that point. The juice had a vegitative smell. Today ... Sunday, I checked the sugar again (not the acid) and it was up to 17.8 brix. The smell is much sweeter, and blackberry like. I think I will be ready to pick next weekend. There are chances for rain next few days, but I think I should be dry enough to harvest by the weekend. The sugar is lower than I would like, but I don't want to risk losing the crop due to predation or rot.

I will take measurements on Friday, and decide at that point if I will harvest on Sunday.