The Vineyard Update

There are few people who can combine the intuitive experience of a local farmer with the accuracy of a scientist, but our veteran viticulturist Briaan Stipp does just that. With an unrivalled understanding of the Robertson Valley, Briaan weighs in on what’s happening right now in the vineyards.

“We have just finished our first pruning and the early varieties like chardonnay and chenin are starting to ‘bud break’. That means that the new buds are coming through. You get even and uneven bud breaks but we had a very decent winter, so with the new shoots we are getting a nice even bud break. That helps with canopy management. Over the next 3-4 weeks the different varieties will start coming through.”

“For the next month there is the risk of frost damage. We haven’t had it in the last few years, so touch wood, we will go through another season without that. The only thing we are concerned about is that our main irrigation dam, Brandvlei, is about 20% less full than it was this time last year. We get rain in the Western Cape right up until November, so hopefully there is more to come.”

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