Next Meeting TBA
Shoot Thinning, with Ron Mosley, Vinescape
Thursday, April 20
at Domaine Eden
Congress Springs Rd. (Hwy. 9), Saratoga
Ron Mosley will give a presentation on shoot thinning and a demonstration in the vineyard at Domaine Eden. With all the water in the soil this year we can expect aggressive shoot growth.
Ron planted the vineyard originally in 1983 for Tom Mudd, the founder of Cinnabar Winery, and has continued to work this vineyard since and currently with Jeffrey Patterson, who acquired the property in 2007. The vineyard is planted to Chardonnay, Pinot Noir and Cabernet Sauvignon. Ron manages about 80 vineyards in the area, and teaches a series of viticulture classes at Foothill College, including vineyard management (this summer), installation (starting in September), and pruning. You can see more information on these classes here.
Please bring your own chair (chairs are not available here) and wineglass. As usual, please bring a bottle of wine to share.
Thank you to Jeffrey Patterson for hosting.
Thermaculture., with Marty Fischer, President, Agrothermal Systems
Thursday, March 23
3:30pm at Stockwell Cellars
1100 Fair Ave., Santa Cruz
Agrothermal Systems has pioneered the use of thermaculture, a new sustainable method that uses heat, applied with a machine pulled by a tractor, to promote healthier plants and improve yields. Benefits include improved set, reduced pesticide use, and improved wine quality by increasing phenols and antioxidant levels. This method is currently in use in vineyards throughout California and locally at Windy Oaks, in the Pacific Northwest and Europe. It is effective for various varietals, and has been found to be especially beneficial to Pinot Noir. Dr. Richard Smart joined the company last year to help develop the science behind thermaculture. Find out more from this presentation about what thermaculture is and how it works.
This is our first meeting of the year and it will give us all a chance to reconnect starting out the 2017 vintage (after a very wet winter!). As usual, please bring a bottle of wine to share.
November 30: Post Harvest Vineyard Maintenance, with a focus on Vine Nutrition
at Falcon Hill Vineyard, Santa Cruz
Katarina Flores, Certified Crop Advisor and PCA with Simplot in Salinas and Prudy Foxx, Foxx Viticulture will talk about post-harvest maintenance practices, with some new thoughts on vine nutrition and amendments. As well, Katarina will talk about salts concentration affecting vineyards, including: signs of salts concentration; how to determine whether your irrigation water is contributing salts; and how to solve the problem. Denis Hoey of Odonata Wines will introduce the topic. Denis sources Falcon Hill’s Pinot Noir and has implemented a number of changes in the vineyard over the past few years. He and Jim Adkisson, grower and owner of Falcon Hill will show us around the vineyard.
August 5: Preparing for Harvest
and: Cordon and Cane Pruning
at Branciforte Ridge Vineyard, Santa Cruz
We will walk through the vineyard discussing pre-harvest irrigations, hedging, leaf pulling, and any other late-season issues. As well, we’ll discuss and view the difference between cane and cordon pruned rows and hear why Branciforte Ridge has converted every other row from cordon to cane. Branciforte Ridge sources Pinot Noir to Jeff Emery, Santa Cruz Mountain Vineyard.
June 1: Weed Management with John Roncoroni, UCCE Weed Science Farm Advisor who specializes in vineyard weed management and speaks to growers throughout Northern California. John will talk about issues including: identifying weeds vs. cover crop; the status of organic herbicides; weed management options. Location: Wrights Vineyard & Winery.
Thursday, May 5 at Thomas Fogarty’s Gist Ranch vineyard off of Skyline Rd. Vineyard manager Marshal White will give us a tour of Fogarty’s ‘southern estate’ vineyard, a 100-acre parcel with 14 acres of vineyard located 17 miles south of the winery. He will talk about their soil management program, including spading, composting and cover crop.
About Gist Ranch: The property features 14 acres of organically-grown grapes including Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Malbec, Cabernet Franc, Syrah, Chardonnay, Pinot Gris and Nebbiolo. Gist Ranch sits atop a ridge at 2300 feet above sea level and experiences a relatively cool climate influenced by the Pacific Ocean about 14 miles to the west. Planted in 1999, this vineyard is responsible for a number of Fogarty’s single-site bottling.