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Hazelmere's post triggered this - If you grow grapes what are your growing, what is doing best? Most of my grapes are not in Hazelmere's link.

My general site is about elev 4620, narrow lot, vines protected from canyon winds, general slope of area is 4% down to the SW. Most vines are on the north side of my yard. Training system is best described as "pergola".

Malbec, 10 vines, planted in 2017. 7 vines at 4' spacing sit in front of a 7' concrete wall retaining 3' to 5' and next to the driveway, 2 vines at low corners of my garage and one behind a detached garage with top trellis wire above the garage roof. My detached unheated garage retains 5' to 6' of fill on 2 sides. Really well protected from canyon winds and the concrete wall helps temper heat in the summer and cold in the winter. They are very vigorous and max yield has been about 4lbs per linear ft of trellis. Powdery mildew resistance is good. Wall vines ripen mid september, garage corners ripen late september and behind the garage is typically mid October. Overall the Malbec seems best suited to my site.

Tempranillo, 9 vines, planted in 2017. 7 Vines at 6' spacing sit in front of a 2' wall retaining 18", in front of a 6' fence on the wall and next to the driveway, the other 2 are behind the garage and in front of an 8' tall fence. Well protected from canyon winds up to the top of the fence. Above the fence leaves have been stripped during canyon wind events. At the tempranillo the house shades much of the driveway but the neighbors house reflects a huge amount of light. The fences don't temper the heat as well and I've measured a 5 degree difference in high temp inside the canopy in the 15' from the Malbec wall to the start of the Tempranillos. They are vigorous but are less resistant to powdery mildew and in general never look as healthy as the malbecs. Max yield has been about 4lbs per linear ft of trellis. Wall vines ripen early to mid September, behind the garage ripen mid to late September.

Baco Noir 6 vines, planted in 2021, 2 along the driveway near the Tempranillos but no fence, 3 on the south side of the house and 1 behind the garage between a Malbec and Tempranillo. They don't seem as vigorous as the malbecs or tempranillos but they are still young. Max yield so far is about 1lb per LF but I expect that to go up but don't think they will ever get to 4lbs/LF of Malbec. All vines ripen in early September.

Tannats 5 vines planted in 2021. PLanted in front of the neighbors shed and in front of a 4' retaining wall. They are more vigorous than the Tempranillos and less than the Malbecs but look just as good as the Malbecs. Max yield looks like if will be 2 lbs per LF of trellis but they are young and I expect they will exceed 3lbs/lf. They ripen mid to late October.

I picked the Malbec due to the similar climate of Mendoza and Salt Lake. I picked the Tempranillo because I like cheap spanish wines and it was supposed to ripen earlier than many vinifera varieties. I planted the Baco's and Tannats in hope of getting a little more acid. The Tempranillo and Malbec PH has been in the 3.6 to 4.1 range although it seems to be trending down as the vines age.

Overall, if you asked me what to plant, I'd recommend the Malbecs 1st, Baco second, Tanat and Tempranillo tied for now (Tannat because of how late they ripen and Tempranillo because they just seem to struggle). They all seem to make good wine, my wife typically prefers the Tempranillo, I prefer the Malbec, this year is really the first real harvest year for the Bacos and Tannats.

So far no winter damage but my site is well protected, with no place for cold pools. We'll see, SLC definitely has the potential for significant cold, but since I moved here in 96 it has barely been below 0.
 
rip out the dogs and replant with more Malbec

Truly ripe Malbec can be sensational.

IMHO If I could grow Malbec which I absolutely adore I would be all over it. I'd even consider ripping out Baco Noir and replacing with Malbec. I really like ripe Baco Noir and if you do keep it but if you can grow healthy dead ripe Malbec then do that. One of my friends had a sensational 100% Washington Malbec from Meek Vineyard that was to die for. What is the brix on your Malbec right now or when you picked it?
 
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rip out the dogs and replant with more Malbec

Truly ripe Malbec can be sensational.

IMHO If I could grow Malbec which I absolutely adore I would be all over it. I'd even consider ripping out Baco Noir and replacing with Malbec. I really like ripe Baco Noir and if you do keep it but if you can grow healthy dead ripe Malbec then do that. One of my friends had a sensational 100% Washington Malbec from Meek Vineyard that was to die for. What is the brix on your Malbec right now or when you picked it?
This year the Malbec's got picked at an average of 23 brix. Highest picking ever was 25 brix. I harvest based on available time and to avoid picking everything at once. I suspect I could get 25 or higher every year on the wall Malbecs but then I'd being picking 400 lbs in a weekend which would be too much for me to handle. 60 lbs a day to pick and destem is a nice day. I did one 150 lb day and will never do that again.

If my wife didn't prefer the Tempranillo I'd think about removing them. The Bacos were planted in areas of limited sun, where I think the Malbecs might struggle. That changed though, I was able to buy the house next door to the south, which had a ton of siberian elms, trash trees in this area, that shaded some of my yard. I'll probably move the Bacos on the south side of my house and replace with Malbecs and maybe more Tannats. With the additional space I've got more options than I used to have. The siberian elms were really driving all my gardening decisions. I'm planning on renovating the house I bought and the yard (along with south part of my yard) in 2025.
 
WOW, very cool. I thought about planting on my hillside in Emigration Canyon but concerned the deer would eat it all and I don't really want to put up fencing.
 
We don't get deer in the summer here. The racoons just walk by the grapes.

I have had deer in the winter kill a small peach tree but haven't seen winter deer damage on the vines.

I wonder how high up the canyon you could go and still get a viable harvest. Did your yard freeze last night?

If you are on the south facing side of the canyon vinefera might be viable if you aren't too high.

The growing season just varies so dramatically with elevation.
 
We don't get deer in the summer here. The racoons just walk by the grapes.

I have had deer in the winter kill a small peach tree but haven't seen winter deer damage on the vines.

I wonder how high up the canyon you could go and still get a viable harvest. Did your yard freeze last night?

If you are on the south facing side of the canyon vinefera might be viable if you aren't too high.

The growing season just varies so dramatically with elevation.
We are about 5900 ft. A couple miles past Ruth's Diner then up into Emigration Oaks. Maybe I'll buy a couple of vines and test. Deer would decimate garden if it didn't have some fencing.

Past couple of nights 33 degrees for low. We have a south south-east facing slope.
 
@Brent2489 You would probably not be able to plant any grapes with a rating of hardiness zone 6 and above. We can mostly get away with it in SLC if there isn't a chance for a cold pool or a favorable micro climate. It's not necessarily the single or couple day cold snaps its more about the long term cold that will damage the cell walls. Last year at my property, it got down to 9ºF, definitely too cold for most grapes rated zone 6 (I have Regent in that category) but it was only 1 day and generally stayed in the low 20sºF during January, which most zone 6 can handle but up in emigration it got down to -3ºF and averaged in the low teens ºF, which would start to cause some serious damage. But.....as you say, deer are the bigger challenge up there but I'd love to see how they fare! It would be great to really put the zone ratings to the test.

Personally, I've generally stayed away from pure European wine grapes because 1. I think cold/disease hardy hybrids are the future (but I mean, most wine grapes these days are hybrids - I'm looking at you Cabernet Sauvignon) and 2. I think there is room for so many fun and delicious options that don't carry the same baggage and expectation as long time wine grapes.
 
We are about 5900 ft. A couple miles past Ruth's Diner then up into Emigration Oaks. Maybe I'll buy a couple of vines and test. Deer would decimate garden if it didn't have some fencing.

Past couple of nights 33 degrees for low. We have a south south-east facing slope.
Our low was 50 2 days ago and 42 last night. I bet your growing season is 30 days less than mine. Which would be a problem for my vinefera vines.

You might have a problem with warm April's triggering bud break then a May freeze on any grape you plant.

Vines are relatively cheap, experiment!
 
This year the Malbec's got picked at an average of 23 brix. Highest picking ever was 25 brix. I harvest based on available time and to avoid picking everything at once. I suspect I could get 25 or higher every year on the wall Malbecs but then I'd being picking 400 lbs in a weekend which would be too much for me to handle. 60 lbs a day to pick and destem is a nice day. I did one 150 lb day and will never do that again.

If my wife didn't prefer the Tempranillo I'd think about removing them. The Bacos were planted in areas of limited sun, where I think the Malbecs might struggle. That changed though, I was able to buy the house next door to the south, which had a ton of siberian elms, trash trees in this area, that shaded some of my yard. I'll probably move the Bacos on the south side of my house and replace with Malbecs and maybe more Tannats. With the additional space I've got more options than I used to have. The siberian elms were really driving all my gardening decisions. I'm planning on renovating the house I bought and the yard (along with south part of my yard) in 2025.
23+ brix on any red wine grape is perfect. If your Malbec isn't damaged and you are careful with it, destemming it the way you do with RC212 yeast with nutrient could give you a sensational red wine. I wouldn't sulphite until after malolactic fermentation. That is why pressing it around SG 1.000 matters i.e. carbon dioxide from slight ferment off of a press and off of sludge (e.g. SG 0.996 approximate) with or without oak should give you something really good. I'd sulphite to 50 ppm total sulphite as potassium metabisulphite after racking post malolactic. I envy your ability to grow it.
 
23+ brix on any red wine grape is perfect. If your Malbec isn't damaged and you are careful with it, destemming it the way you do with RC212 yeast with nutrient could give you a sensational red wine. I wouldn't sulphite until after malolactic fermentation. That is why pressing it around SG 1.000 matters i.e. carbon dioxide from slight ferment off of a press and off of sludge (e.g. SG 0.996 approximate) with or without oak should give you something really good. I'd sulphite to 50 ppm total sulphite as potassium metabisulphite after racking post malolactic. I envy your ability to grow it.
I haven't tried malolactic yet. I did buy some this year and will try it on the last Malbec picking and probably the tannat too.
 
I'm definitely interested in how your Malbec and Tempranillo turn out. I'm a big Tempranillo fan and I'd love to grow it if it will ripen. I'll be waiting eagerly for tasting notes in..oh a year :)
 
I'm definitely interested in how your Malbec and Tempranillo turn out. I'm a big Tempranillo fan and I'd love to grow it if it will ripen. I'll be waiting eagerly for tasting notes in..oh a year :)
Unfortunately, I'm not a supertaster, and decided to grow grapes because I like how they look. The wine is just a bonus.

My tasting notes from last year's tempranillos is
color - good
Smell - good
Taste - good.

Once a year or so I search for a wine tasting class to educate myself.

What I really want is a class that tastes bad wines.

Ie this is what a corked wine tastes like, this is oxidized, this is too much oak, this is too much tannin...

I think if I could isolate the taste once, I'd be able to pick the specific element taste up in a good wine.

Mostly I think mine is as good as the $15 or less Spanish and Argentinian wine I would buy.

I do think the Malbec and tempranillos are more cold hardy than you do. Wsu has a lot of good info on cold hardiness. Last winter it got down to about 2 at my house. I've got a pomegranate between the Tempranillo and Malbec, the cold killed all the pomegranate branches above the ground. I didn't notice any real damage to the grapes. That said, I do worry about a real cold snap killing the grapes to the ground.
 
Unfortunately, I'm not a supertaster, and decided to grow grapes because I like how they look. The wine is just a bonus.

My tasting notes from last year's tempranillos is
color - good
Smell - good
Taste - good.

Once a year or so I search for a wine tasting class to educate myself.

What I really want is a class that tastes bad wines.

Ie this is what a corked wine tastes like, this is oxidized, this is too much oak, this is too much tannin...

I think if I could isolate the taste once, I'd be able to pick the specific element taste up in a good wine.

Mostly I think mine is as good as the $15 or less Spanish and Argentinian wine I would buy.

I do think the Malbec and tempranillos are more cold hardy than you do. Wsu has a lot of good info on cold hardiness. Last winter it got down to about 2 at my house. I've got a pomegranate between the Tempranillo and Malbec, the cold killed all the pomegranate branches above the ground. I didn't notice any real damage to the grapes. That said, I do worry about a real cold snap killing the grapes to the ground.
I’ve been wanting a “bad wine” tasting too! I mean, over the years I’ve been able to pick out different flavors and accidentally oxidize unfinished bottles but I can’t put a name to it all.

I’ll have to look at WSU. I have always just defaulted to USU and maybe I haven’t searched broadly enough.

Also, those tasting notes are basically what I think everyone should do. Is the wine sound? Does it taste and smell good to you? Hooray! You found a wine you like. Enjoy!
 
I’ve been wanting a “bad wine” tasting too! I mean, over the years I’ve been able to pick out different flavors and accidentally oxidize unfinished bottles but I can’t put a name to it all.

I’ll have to look at WSU. I have always just defaulted to USU and maybe I haven’t searched broadly enough.

Also, those tasting notes are basically what I think everyone should do. Is the wine sound? Does it taste and smell good to you? Hooray! You found a wine you like. Enjoy!
The wsu site actually tests the cold hardiness of vines at different times during the year. The cold hardiness varies pretty significantly from fall to winter to spring.


I think that in general our climate is similar to the western Washington wine regions. The main difference is our potential for significant cold is higher.

I just looked at a plot of walla walla versus slc temps. April through October is pretty similar. In winter we average about 7 degrees lower.
 
The wsu site actually tests the cold hardiness of vines at different times during the year. The cold hardiness varies pretty significantly from fall to winter to spring.


I think that in general our climate is similar to the western Washington wine regions. The main difference is our potential for significant cold is higher.

I just looked at a plot of walla walla versus slc temps. April through October is pretty similar. In winter we average about 7 degrees lower

Super cool! I’ll look into that. That’s very cool to know that there’s another local resource.
 
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