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Wine Diary

Before flowering

June 4, 2019

This year we have been spared the dreaded late frosts. In the beginning of May, with clear skies, night temperatures once fell slightly below 0°Celsius for a short period of time, and we were just one whisker away from catastrophe. The next day, you could almost hear the common sigh of relief in Langenlois!

Otherwise, the first two months of spring were very warm and dry. We had to wait until a very cool May produced the long desired rainfalls. With June came the summer. Nature now deploys breathtaking energies! It is a great joy to see everything greening and blossoming in the vineyards! Red clovers work as an eye-catcher for the wanderers. On closer inspection we observe honey bees, bumble bees, harmless butterflies and lots of smaller insects dancing from flower to flower attracted by the life-giving nectar. Thanks to the prolonged periods of spring rain, earth worms also have flourished underground. The fruit sets are developing well so far, yet we have to wait a few more days until blossoming starts. This means, we are not late, however, compared to last year’s flowering dates, we might be two weeks behind. No wonder, 2018 was the earliest year in our records!

Work in the vineyards is progressing nicely! Removing excessive shoots from the vines is part of the laborious daily routine. All shoots that are positioned too low on the vine and all their neighboring latent buds have to be picked and brushed off properly. To obtain a well-shaped, airy leaf wall, many excessive shoots must be removed even though most of them are already carrying fruit settings. This measure reduces fruit quantity before flowering and is one of the many requirements for high quality grape growing.