We started this week working on the Marquette trellis in unusually nice weather for December. When we were pruning the Marquette, it was clear that the trellis really needed some attention. We needed to fix some wires that had broken, replace staples that had pulled out, and fix or replace some cross braces in the H-structure at the ends of each row. Trellises handle significant stresses from wind and changing temperatures and they need regular maintenance.
We purchased a new barrel pruner attachment for our V-Mech. It will not only cut excess growth out of the canopy, but it will also mulch what is removed. We are hoping that it will remove the longer canes and especially the bull canes which become a real pain for us if they are still in the canopy when the vines start to bud out. But, this is new machinery and we are still figuring out how to use it to maximum advantage. It didn’t come with an instruction manual! Stay tuned for updates!
Weather permitting, we plan to mechanically prune all of our Marquette, St. Croix at both Meadowcreek and Newport Lane, Frontenac at Newport Lane, Sabrevois, St. Croix, and Brianna at Tassel Ridge, and the Sabrevois at Maple Woods. We won’t get all of this done before the holidays but we hope to make major progress.