Winter's here and one of our biggest jobs in the vineyard is pruning. Our Pinot Noir vines are only 2 years old but they've taken well to the Macedon Ranges cool climate with real vigor. Pruning is not one of the most exciting jobs to work on in the vineyard but it is one of the most important. Get it right and you set yourself up for success for the upcoming year... get it wrong and you can have a real disaster on your hands.
So what is pruning? One of the main jobs of pruning is to tell the vine how many bunches of grapes you want it to produce and to ripen in the year, it also determines the crop for the next year. Cutting back last years canes help the vine grow healthier and more rigorously in the spring.
Pictured above: Samantha has opened one of the plastic grow guards to reveal the vine and the 2 main canes. The weakest of the two canes will be snipped off near the base and the remaining cane will be snipped higher up, 1 inch under the cordon wire.
It's then important to remove all the other buds on the cane leaving just two at the top. These buds will create the two new canes for this year's growth. After that's all done, zip up the grow guard and start the next vine, repeat this 1000's of times until you've done so many squats you've got buns of steel.