Coping with heat

Winemaking Talk - Winemaking Forum

Help Support Winemaking Talk - Winemaking Forum:

Obbnw

Senior Member
Joined
May 14, 2019
Messages
106
Reaction score
106
Location
Salt Lake City Utah
We went from hottest June and July on record to one of the wettest augusts ever. Seems like my place is approaching 6" ( includes the Aug 2 deluge).

My brix/ph ratio is the best its ever been. Usually our ph is really high, 3.8 to 4.2. The tempranillos are at 18-22 brix and ph looks about 3.2.

Don't know if it is all the rain bringing down the pH or if it is the heavy crop load. Looks like 15-20 lbs per vine.

Hmmm.

A few of the vines are confused too, they are flowering again.

I'm sitting in the garage watching it rain.
 

Attachments

Last edited:

Sage

Junior Member
WMT Supporter
Joined
Aug 23, 2014
Messages
821
Reaction score
1,301
We got a little rain, probably around .10 inch. Did some pruning and started leaf thinning. Starting to see color on all the varieties. Some real nice clusters on Merlot and Syrah. Cabs, some small clusters and not a lot clusters. Carmenere, good clusters but scattered areas.

Overall, good crop on Syrah and Merlot. Carmenere, small crop. Cabs, very small crop.IMG_20210821_153705518_compress84.jpgIMG_20210821_155116206_compress99.jpgIMG_20210821_153813759_compress68.jpg
 

Sage

Junior Member
WMT Supporter
Joined
Aug 23, 2014
Messages
821
Reaction score
1,301
I forgot to add that I tried a different pruning system on one row. That's where the photos were taken. I left some long runners to the top wire. From what I can see, Merlot really liked it and Syrah did also but not quite as much. From the very first planting, I had trained the first Syrah plant in the row that way and had been watching it. Decided to try it and did a couple vines last year and then a whole row this time.
 

Sage

Junior Member
WMT Supporter
Joined
Aug 23, 2014
Messages
821
Reaction score
1,301
The odd duck. Not sure what got into this one Syrah. Everything else is just a spot of color here and there. Then there's this....

IMG_20210823_125651467_compress4.jpg
 

Obbnw

Senior Member
Joined
May 14, 2019
Messages
106
Reaction score
106
Location
Salt Lake City Utah
I want to pick my grapes. The tempranillos slowed way down and the Malbecs are catching up. I think I picked too early last year so this year I'm letting them hang. Maybe another 2 weeks if I can hold out.

Bought extra buckets and carboys today anticipating a big harvest. Hopefully I'll find something to keep me busy next weekend so I don't wander aimlessly up and down my row of grapes dreaming of my harvest.

On a related note saw another thread listing prices per lug (36 lbs) of just over $1/lb. How can anyone make any money growing grapes?
 

Sage

Junior Member
WMT Supporter
Joined
Aug 23, 2014
Messages
821
Reaction score
1,301
Those last week's are hard to resist going for it. Just go by the numbers and taste!
 

treesaver

wino
Joined
Aug 31, 2016
Messages
208
Reaction score
56
When the seeds turn brown, your within a month! After that do a random brix check in the vineyard. My biggest problem is always insects. Wasps are always a plauge, but this year, some kind of moth was sucking the berrys dry, all of a sudden. I sprayed as soon as I found them, but it was amazing how much damage they did in a days time!
 

Sage

Junior Member
WMT Supporter
Joined
Aug 23, 2014
Messages
821
Reaction score
1,301
Did a taste test and checked the seed last Sunday. Getting sweet, seed just starting to turn brown. Only the Carmenere had a distinct green be taste.
 

Obbnw

Senior Member
Joined
May 14, 2019
Messages
106
Reaction score
106
Location
Salt Lake City Utah
So far I've picked about 350 lbs over 3 weeks. Still have about 150 to go.

What is interesting is yields are huge, but brix and PH are good and taste is very good.

I'm going to end up averaging over 25Lbs per vine with the biggest vines over 40lbs. PH is lower than any previous year and brix is generally higher than previous years, brix ranges from 23.5 to 25.5 for 6 gallon batches, Ph 3.6 to 3.9 (low for my site) TA from 4.5 to 6 which is also similar to previous years. I'm not doing a traditional trellis system. Vines are about 6' apart but are 10' tall and have fruit at 3 or 4 different levels and the big plants extend 10' over my garage door.

I saw adverse effects from the June heat wave. Flowering started before the heat wave and finished after. The clusters which set during the heat wave were thinner. I do have the advantage of picking over several weeks. I had some vines where I picked the lower (riper) grapes 2 weeks before I finished picking the higher clusters.

Anyway I have high hopes for the wine. First 2 batches seem very good (primary and secondary fermentation are almost done.

A few pics.

The tannats are from 2 year old vines, only allowed a few clusters. They were exceptionally dense clusters and tasted much different than the malbecs and tempranillo.

PXL_20210925_155204022cr.jpg
PXL_20210925_170738439cr.jpg
PXL_20210925_235215125cr.jpg
 

Attachments

Sage

Junior Member
WMT Supporter
Joined
Aug 23, 2014
Messages
821
Reaction score
1,301
Sitting on 19-23 Brix, depending on variety, and looking at a 29 degree forecast tonight. Only one cold night forecast then back up. Might be harvesting on Wednesday and Thursday.

I'll wait and see what the vines look like!
 

Sage

Junior Member
WMT Supporter
Joined
Aug 23, 2014
Messages
821
Reaction score
1,301
Well, waited 3 days to see what the 26 degree morning did. Merlot took it pretty hard. Will start picking today when the rain stops. All of the others did get a frost burn and are close enough. Will completely harvest everything tommorow.
 

Latest posts

Top