Marquette has started veraison where the grapes start changing from a milky-green color to purple, as in the case of Marquette. The grapes also get softer and the juice inside the grapes becomes less acidic and sweeter, especially as harvest approaches. We are about ten days later this year than we’ve been in the past. Normally, we harvest Marquette about September 1, but it’s not clear that they will be ready for harvest that early this year. We will keep you posted.

Our high school student helpers will only be with us for another week so we will put them to work removing the grow-tubes from the 1,500 new vines we’ve planted. On Monday, we had a very still morning so we sprayed all of the Marquette vineyard with a fungicide. We are also starting to see some Japanese Beetles that now have been seen in almost all of Iowa’s counties.

We will be working on making sure we have strong trunks and that we have two strong cordons on each of the vines in our Edelweiss Bloc A. We cut the trunks off at the ground two years ago because the vines appeared to be diseased, most did not have two cordons, and they had been inappropriately pruned in recent years. We should start to have grapes on these vines next year and eventually a much better harvest than in previous years.