Understanding site "capacity": the key to farming grapes successfully in the foothills.
Understanding the capacity of your site is the first step to achieving vine balance, quality grapes and quality wine!
Site capacity is mainly indicated by the soils on your site, and the site microclimate.
- Remember, foothill grape growing sites are highly variable! Each parcel needs to be evaluated for its potential.
- Soils can be deep and nutrient-rich, such as many volcanic soils, or more shallow, (say, at the top of a slope) or/and lacking some key nutrients, such as granitic soils typically low in phosphorus.
- Frost Damage in Vineyard
- Calculating the available irrigation water you will have (either well water or delivered), is also an important factor for planning your vineyard.
- An understanding of your grapevine's nutritional status, which can affect berry set and overall health of your vines, is required.
- You'll need the ability to manage certain pests and disease problems, such as powdery mildew, which ALL grape growers must be prepared to spray for, in order to produce quality grapes without defects.
- Vine Sprayer in Vineyard
- Finally, the ability to market your grape crop and receive a fair price, which requires not only growing an excellent product, but also developing a relationship with a buyer based on communication.