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GiannisF_96

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Hello everyone,

I hope you're all in good health and high spirits. I have registered in these forums primarily for this first post. I am dealing with a difficult situation and I need help with making a decision.

About three months ago my father abruptly lost his battle with cancer. The loss was sudden and unexpected. His passing left our family heartbroken, but also ment that him and I did not have the chance to plan for a turn of events like this.

He left behind a vineyard, a pretty small one admitedly. I estimate it to have roughly 500-600 vines, but I can't tell neither what kinds of vines nor even how many different types there are. The vineyard is located in Kassandra, Greece, a mostly sunny, hot, but still very humid place. My father had purchased a lot of equipment, and the vineyard is about 6 years old. He did not attend to it as much during this past year due to health difficulties.

I absolutely zero idea what to do with it, or even where to begin searching. The vines have still grapes on them, but from what I understand it's too late for (most of) them to become wine.

The urgent question is: What do I do now? I have thought of distilling some tsipouro with whatever product is still acceptable.

A couple of very basic questions that also have is how much money does it cost annualu to keep the vineyard going and secondly, how much of my time will it take to take care of it. I know that most of the work is done during spring summer, but I would still appreciate a seasonal estimation of time demand.

Lastly, I would like to ask where can I start learning more about the craft and what are some fundamental things I have to do or avoid.

Any help would be greatly appreciated, I am struggling to decide whether to take on the task or not. I think I will at least try.

Thank you in advance everyone, take care,
John
 

GiannisF_96

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Sorry for your lose. I would suggest visiting other vineyards in the area and search for there advice. Possibly making a business arrangement to take care of the vineyard until you feel comfortable managing it. Good Luck

I have contacted some of the people my father knew in this business, in order to find out what they think about the condition of the vineyard. I will definitely ask them about your recommendation. Thank you very much.
 

VinesnBines

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Yes, sorry for your loss.

A 6 year old vineyard is still quite young so even if neglected for one year, it should not be difficult to get back into shape. I expect you have about 1/2 acre in vines - depending on spacing. One person should be able to handle this with a day of work every week or two. It probably will not take that much time but for the new vineyard manager, I would allow that much time at first.

Since we are at the end of the season, you have the winter to learn and study. There are plenty of resources on the internet and I'm sure someone nearby will give you some pointers. Don't give up on the grapes for this year. You may make some good jelly or a small batch of wine. In any event, get out there and make pictures of grapes, vines, trellis, (everything) so you have a record of what is there and what needs to be done.

As far as money, it will depend on how much you need to spend on chemicals for sprays. It should not be terribly expensive, especially since your father has some equipment. Again, your contacts will be better able to give you an estimate of the cost per acre for chemicals.

My husband and I are taking care of 1 1/2 acres and I've heard it said that one person can handle up to 5 acres alone. You shouldn't have any trouble keeping up with a small vineyard. Hopefully your father made some notes somewhere.
 

GiannisF_96

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Yes, sorry for your loss.

A 6 year old vineyard is still quite young so even if neglected for one year, it should not be difficult to get back into shape. I expect you have about 1/2 acre in vines - depending on spacing. One person should be able to handle this with a day of work every week or two. It probably will not take that much time but for the new vineyard manager, I would allow that much time at first.

Since we are at the end of the season, you have the winter to learn and study. There are plenty of resources on the internet and I'm sure someone nearby will give you some pointers. Don't give up on the grapes for this year. You may make some good jelly or a small batch of wine. In any event, get out there and make pictures of grapes, vines, trellis, (everything) so you have a record of what is there and what needs to be done.

As far as money, it will depend on how much you need to spend on chemicals for sprays. It should not be terribly expensive, especially since your father has some equipment. Again, your contacts will be better able to give you an estimate of the cost per acre for chemicals.

My husband and I are taking care of 1 1/2 acres and I've heard it said that one person can handle up to 5 acres alone. You shouldn't have any trouble keeping up with a small vineyard. Hopefully your father made some notes somewhere.

Thank you for your advice, I will try and keep a record of what's going on and perhaps I'll give it a shot this year.Some old folks agreed to come and inspect the vineyard, so I hope to hear at least some good news today. In any case I will decide what to do with the product after I hear what they have to say. I'll take some more time to think about actually making wine next year. I hope to maintain what has already been done without damaging it, until I get enough experience or a more viable solution appears. Again, I greatly appreciate your help.
 

Jal5

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I too am sorry for your loss.
I hope you are able to at least try to make it work in memory of your father. What a great tribute this would be for him! And it is a real legacy that he will have passed on to you and your family if you can make this work. I think getting other winemakers in the region who knew your father to offer advice and help is the way to go. Maybe you could trade some of the harvest for their help? Good luck!
Joe
 

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