Frequent rain last week made spraying and mowing impossible. The vineyards were really soggy. We did get more Mulberry trees removed but even that task was possible on only a couple of days. Last weekend, somebody asked me why we have so many Mulberry trees and why we have to remove them. Mulberry trees grow wild in areas close to the vineyards. Birds eat the mulberries and then fly over to the vineyard where they perch on the trellis wires until it is time to relieve themselves. They drop the mulberry seeds wrapped in a nice coat of Nitrogen right in the row under the vines. Next spring, the seeds germinate. They grow fast both above and below the ground. Below the ground, their tap root grows almost as deep as the tree above ground is high. And, that tap root must be removed in its entirety or another tree will grow. It doesn’t take more than 3–4 years for the trees to grow to 15 feet with a trunk base reaching two inches in diameter. Leaving the trees will eventually impede mechanical pruning and in dry years, they will compete with the vines for water. Fortunately, we can remove them pretty easily with the forklift attachment on a tractor when the ground is wet. Basically, we just have to yank them out.
This week, we will spray fungicide for the last time this season and then we’ll clean up the sprayer and put them away for the season.