With winter arriving and the grapevines becoming dormant, we begin the labour intensive process of pruning.
Pruning grapevines allows you to improve fruit quality by achieving a balanced vine. A vine can only produce a certain quantity of fruit, this capacity is largely driven by the amount of leaf area and thus the photosynthetic activity that will occur. The aim is to control the fruit yield and provide optimal canopy (leaf area) to ripen fruit.
Step 1: Two canes are selected and wrapped along the fruit wire commonly referred to as cane pruning. All remaining canes are removed from the vines except for two short canes called the replacement spurs. This method allows us to control the total number of buds on the vine, which concentrates the growth into the remaining shoots.
Step 2: The shoots on one side of the cane are removed. The remaining shoots are then directed upwards using pairs of foliage wires and trained to grow vertically referred to as vertical shoot position (VSP). This gives the best exposure to sunlight and maximises air flow reducing the risk of disease. It also allows us to use minimal chemicals to prevent powdery mildew and bunch rot.
Did You Know?
- All our vines are hand pruned
- It takes approximately 2-3 minutes to prune each vine
- To cane prune our entire vineyard in Anakie of 45,000 vines requires 1,500 hours of labour
- To achieve the desired canopy (VSP) it will then require a similar amount of time during the growing season.
"In our view, wine is made in the vineyard. We are working to produce the highest quality fruit possible and thus the best wine possible that expresses our site." - Gus del Rio