harvest Tag

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We survived the fires of 2017! Very surreal to be picking grapes and making wine while surrounded by fire on three sides with bombers and helicopters flying just above tree-top level. Hard to decide what to do with the contents of two workshops, a winery and 2.5 houses. Finally decided to just roll with it and hope for the best! Not knowing if I would have a home or livelihood was kind of daunting. My sons Caston and Jace came down from Canada to help harvest as quickly as possible. Grateful for their help during those crazy weeks. The good news: We survived! -Sheldon

2013 was another great growing season, but 2014 and 2015 would not fare as well. After our fifth consecutive year of drought, in 2014, the effects began to show. The stress caused the grapes to raisin before they were ripe enough to harvest. We did so anyway, being sure to keep the questionable grapes separate. The experiment did not last long; we ended up disposing of over half of the crush. While 2015 as a vintage also suffered from a sixth year of drought, the whole valley was devastated by shatter before it even mattered. What little rain did come last year, came during bud break in May. It

Our Canadian grandchildren always visit in the summer and help around the vineyard, but this year our oldest grandson, Caston, 14 years old from Calgary, Alberta, joined us for a strenuous ten days at harvest. He was a lot of help, but I think we wore him out. He must have had a magic touch; this harvest would end up being one of our most import harvests to-date.