It is already August and summer is in full swing with hot sunny days. And this is the time when our vineyards require considerable labour and attention: trellising, suckering, leaf thinning.
All this work helps to save the grapes from many diseases (prophylaxis) with a nice and healthy development of plants (phenology).
Since the early June blooming, the plants have evolved significantly: the bunch closure was complete in late July, that is when the grapes are large enough to touch each other. The bunches are beautifully formed, the berries have reached 70% of their volume. Our merlot and malbec grapes change colour and become red, ripening is beginning.
In all of our vineyards the grapes are very healthy despite the heatwave that is starting to affect us. Now we let nature do its job to ripen these beautiful fruits throughout August and September…
Some explanation for non-specialists:
Trellising consists of positioning the shoots upwards as vegetation grows. This is why our rows of vines are beautifully aligned, allowing the grapes to take the maximum advantage of day lighting!
As with tomatoes it is also important to remove all watersprouts or suckers to increase water and nutrients intake to the grapes. This will nourish the grapes and protect the fruits from diseases like mildew, and this is called suckering.
Still in order to favour the grape sunshine, we thin out the leaves. This meticulous work consists of cutting down the number of leaves close to the fruit. But not too much: doing so would burn the grape in the sun and expose it to weathering.