Greg Schultz
 
July 11, 2014 | Greg Schultz

The Vineyard Is In!!!

Following up on last month's blog, the frenzy of work continued.  The days leading up to planting were spent finishing up the drip irrigation system and testing it out.  After all of the emitters were installed, we ran the irrigation system several afternoons to soften the ground where the holes were to be dug for the plants.  

Holes located below the emitters and ready for plants

The Novavines truck arrived mid-morning after making three other stops in the valley.  The Applegate Vineyard Mangement (AVM) crew took a break from digging holes and helped us unload the truck.  The young vines came in trays of 25 plants each and we quickly unloaded the 1950 plants into the garage for safe-keeping.

Tempranillo vines awaiting planting

AVM started planting that day and finished up the next day.  It took a crew of about a dozen experienced vineyard workers to complete the task that quickly.  Had we tried to do this by ourselves, it would have taken a week or more and we would have run the risk of losing some of the plants to the 100 degree heat we were experiencing.

  

Newly installed plant with green wax shown protecting the graft

Grow tubes were put around each plant to protect them for their first year from sun, wind, and varmints.  About a month before cold weather sets in this fall, the tubes will be removed so that the young vines can "harden off" before winter.  Next spring, after pruning the vines back to two buds, the tubes will again be installed.

Grow tubes are attached to the pencil rods to protect the young plants

We have made a few repairs to the drip system and have been on a learning curve regarding the automated timer system.  But, after a few weeks of hot sunny days and twice daily waterings, the plants are looking healthy and are growing.  Very exciting!!!

One of the first vines popping out of grow tube

The next step of the project is to get a deer fence installed.  The grow tubes offer protection, but once the vines really start growing the large number of deer in our area are going to become very interested.  Deer have tremendous leaping ability so the fence has to be strong and tall.

 

Comments

Marilyn Hawkins's Gravatar
 
Marilyn Hawkins
@ Jul 11, 2014 at 4:51 PM
Fortune favors the bold. And you and Debbie are nothing if not that.

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