This week, we will finish tying up the Petite Pearl at Tassel Ridge and the St. Pepin at Maple Woods Vineyards. We will be checking trellis wires for loose staples and rod clips and we will finish mowing. We expect to sell several tons of grapes to other wineries and need to have cardboard gaylords assembled to ship it to our customers in. We got about ¼ inch of rain on Monday so we won’t have to water the LaCrosse at Maple Woods this week. Finally, we will be monitoring the presence of Japanese beetles at Maple Woods Vineyard.

Last week, we began to see grapes entering veraison. That is the time that marks the run-up to harvest when the grapes become less acidic and sweeter. We aren’t the only critters in the vineyard noticing those changes. Just before harvest, we’ll be putting out kites designed to look like hawks to scare off the birds. Nothing seems to work forever but we are seeing good success with kites right now. The action we really don’t want to take is to net the vines. That is slow, manpower intensive, and expensive.

Also, Maple Woods is home to two of the cutest fawns you could imagine. They think that the newly planted vines make the tastiest salad imaginable just as the vine tips emerge from the grow tubes. We put out some tin foil Christmas decorations in the hope that the flashing reflections from the sun would spook them at least for a month or so.