Pruning: Step Two of Our First Growing Season

Workers looked for canes that were at least the thickness of a little finger to bear this year's fruit.
Workers looked for canes that were at least the thickness of a little finger to bear this year's fruit.

What we were afraid would happen happened: Our vines were pruned last week while we were away. We were confident leaving the pruning of our 3.75-acres of young Pinot Noir vines in the capable hands of our vineyard manager, Ulises Valdez, and his crew, but we still wanted to witness it, like watching a baby take its first steps. Every part of this first growing season that will lead to the delivery of our grapes to Kosta Browne Winery is precious to us. Fortunately, our dear friends, Mike and Dede Histand, were there to save the day. While staying in our home, Mike and Dede saw the pruning taking place and rushed out to capture the moment in words and pictures. Here’s what they saw:

Dede: It was such a wonderful surprise to wake up on Wednesday morning and see, looking down the front field through the fog, the pruning crew working their way through the vines. I put down my coffee, grabbed my camera and rushed outside in my PJ's to take photos. Within twenty minutes, the fog had lifted, and by the time I had on my jeans, there was full sun. The workers smiled as I said, "Hola," and "Buenos dias," and didn't seem to mind being the subjects of my photography. We all agreed that it was a fine day for the work. The crew consisted of about ten men.  Mike and I remarked that instead of being plugged into headphones, they seemed to laugh and joke with each other as they worked their way down the rows. One man was the foreman, and he kept watch and track of where they would next prune. We loved being part of the experience. We'll "babysit" the ranch any time!

Mike: The pruning this morning was very beautiful. Pruners appeared at 8 a.m. and probably finished before lunch. They appeared to be very efficient in their work, trimming to two buds on two spurs and carefully cleaning any clingers from the wire. The foreman was cleaning up paper tubes and excess dead grass in the sprayed area. They were really moving along, one man down each row.

Thanks for all your help and support, Dede and Mike! There’s no one else we would have rather shared this moment with.



See how far we've come in our first growing season and where we're going: Steps to Harvest.