Wednesday, October 26, 2005

Rain's here, game over...

Autumn in earnest [Press Democrat]

My harvest is over. All the vines I was looking to get fruit from were picked by the middle of last week.

It’s been raining since ~10 PM last night. Very lightly, but raining none the less. There is still Cab hanging out in the Alexander Valley, and through Knight’s Valley to Calistoga & St. Helena that I know of…
It’s not raining hard enough to hurt the fruit directly, but could dilute the sugar levels slightly. And with the forecast calling for continued cool & somewhat overcast weather, the biggest danger now is mold. Sunday's warmer weather probably won't be enough to keep it in check, but may allow some vineyards to go "late harvest" with botrytis if cool and not too moist in the next few weeks. Three days in the 70's just won't be enough. For the thick-skinned reds there's still time to act. For other varieties, well, as they say "game over"...

Certainly there has been plenty of opportunity for mold spores and botrytis to establish themselves in the vineyards this year. The turn in the weather will give them the chance to really start taking over – and it’s far too late now to apply sulfur.

This should really mark the end of the season. I'm putting the tractor back in the shed.

Doppler radar for this moment:


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