Pride Mountain Vineyards home
January 19, 2015
January in the Vineyard

Winter is a quiet time in our vineyards, but despite the stillness there is a lot that happens during this time of year. Pruning is the main activity and its importance cannot be overstated. By carefully selecting the healthiest buds and leaving the right number of buds to match the vine's potential growth to the soil, rootstock, variety and site, we are setting the vines up for a strong start in the spring. Each member of our 13-man vineyard team has an average of over a dozen year's experience working full time here at Pride, and it is almost zen-like to see them pruning, using intuition and experience to guide them as they fluidly reshape the vines. We use a number of different pruning systems here at Pride, including the commonly-used cordon pruned VSP (vertical shoot positioned) system for most of our vines, cane pruning for our viognier and some cabernet franc, and a modified version of VSP that allows the shoots to spread out more at the top of the trellis in some blocks where more dappled light is beneficial. With the character of the 2015 vintage still entirely unknown to us (though thankfully it won't be the year of extreme drought that we had feared), it is exciting to look out at the resting vines and wonder what Mother Nature has in store for us.    

- - Sally Johnson