Wednesday, 13 June 2012

Potted vineyard... for now.

Hi all!

Seems like an eternity passed since my first post.  The past few weeks have been quite busy since my wife and I are in the process of selling our house and buying a new one.  With a lot less free time, it has been difficult to keep up with things in the vineyard (and this blog) but I figured it was time for an update anyway. 

Here are this year's newborns! 

Temporary vineyard...  waiting for a new home.
All of those were started from cuttings and most are own-rooted hybrids.  But a few varieties ( Reisling and Chardonnay) were grafted to a disease resistant rootstock.  This is my first successful attempt at grafting after having failed miserably last year.  I had ~80 % take/survival rate this year ( none of the grafts took and/or rooted last year). 

Grafted Chardonnay vine.
Grafted Reislng vine.

The rootstock I used is a wild riparia variety that grows everywhere around here and seems to thrive even in very poor locations.  The reasoning behind this was that these wild vines are so well adapted to this environment that they would be good candidates for rootstock.  I guess time will tell... 
One thing I find interesting is that, even though the plants are only a few months old, I can already see a big difference between grafted and own-rooted plants of the same variety.

Grafted Reisling vine (3 months old).
Own-rooted Reisling vine (1+ year old).

Note that the plant on the right is a second year vine started last year from a rooted Reisling cutting.  Seems like my rootstock (left picture) added tons of vigor to a normally low to medium vigor variety.  Another factor could also be that the riparia is a very early budding variety.  That would have given the grafted vine a head start since it would have started growing way before the other. 
Just the beginning...  It will be interesting to compare both vines at the end of the summer, and a year or two from now.

Wild Riparia (rootstock) vine.
Another wild Riparia clone.
I will be experimenting with rootstocks and grafting a lot more because it really seems to make a big difference in growing habits and vigor.  Even with hybrid varieties, even though they don't really need the disease resistance they could benefit from other characteristics of the rootstock like early or  delayed budding, early fruit set and harvests, shorter hardening period, etc.  These are all things you read about but that are difficult to visualize until you can actually see them growing side by side. 

Here are a few more pictures of what I have going on...

Merlot or Cabernet??
(if someone can tell, please help!)
Started from seed 3 years ago.
''Cab-erlot'' leaf.
(again, please help...)

5 year old Pinot Noir flowering.
More flowering Pinot.
Thanks for visiting! 

P.S. I will post a detailed description of my grafting method shortly.  Just sorting out the pictures...

No comments:

Post a Comment