A personal perpsective of life in our Virginia vineyard... Christine Wells Vrooman



Hints of Fall Abound

I can feel it, smell it in the air. I can see it along the "ever so slightly" lighter hued green ridges that roll down into distant valleys. And in the vineyard, things are settling down and I sense a slowing of activity in the vines. Autumn is around the bend.
Our vines are still putting out some new growth which is good for them, as all those new leaves will soak up the nourishment of the sun and send it down to the roots. Because of our earlier issue with Black Rot and having to remove so many of their leaves, we want to encourage new growth still. But by late September we will encourage them to slow down, to take a rest. To begin their winter retreat when all of their "life" is alseep, deep in their roots, deep in the ground, far from any brutally cold temperatures that could harm them. It is hard to believe I am already thinking and talking about winter, when it seems only weeks ago I was trying to keep my head above all the blast of summer demands in the vineyard. Time, you are a fickle friend.

The Trials Continue
We now enter our third week of field trials of our test product for the dreaded Black Rot. Come back mid-September for the report! These results will most likely determine if we can remain organic next year. I am compiling my data, recording my observations, photographing leaves and continuing to study the secret life of "Guignardia Bidwellii"!!... aka Black Rot!

Flowering Gone Wild
My wildflower meadow in the vineyard continues to thicken and send up new splashes of colors and shapes. The honeybees are happy. Butterflies and hummingbirds have found their way, especially my favorite, the Monarch. I am curious to see what perennial seeds buried this year in the meadow will emerge next year, adding to the splendor of it all, to the "multitude" of life co-habitating in this little bit of heaven.

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