Flowering… The second stage of a grape vine


The second stage of a grape vine

By Beth Heiserman

Six weeks ago, I wrote about “The First stage of a grape vine”. This week we are now starting the second stage in our Chardonnay grapes, which is called “flowering”.  It can be anywhere from 40-60 and some varietals takes longer than the 60 days.  The average daily temperature needs to be about 65 °F from bud break. Our Chardonnay has taken about 45 days to flower the last two years, from bud break.  Our Syrah, Cabernet and Merlot are still in the first stage. If we had varietals that all were going through the stages at the same time, we would have a bottleneck during harvest. We have 5 varietals that all progress at different speeds.

After the first clusters come into sight, the flowers will start to grow. Pollination of the grapevines takes place during the second stage which then the grapes will begin to form. They generally have 1-4 seeds each. The varietals that we have, are self pollinators. Some grapes require another varietal that helps amp up the production. Many other fruits are the same way, like apples, peaches and pears. For instance, in order for McIntosh apples to grow well they need another apple to encourage production, like a granny smith or a pink lady.

This weekend, for Mother’s Day, I have created an Italian inspired meal that is wine infused. My marinara sauce has our 2009 Cabernet Sauvignon in it. This is my grandma’s recipe that has been handed down from her mother, my great grandmother. This would have been a meal I would have made for her on Mother’s day. The addition of wine gives so much flavor and complexity. I will be serving a spinach lasagna that pairs well with the 2009 Cabernet  Sauvignon or the 2013 Sangiovese. Roast chicken with my 2011 Muscat garlic cream sauce that pairs perfectly with our 2011 Muscat or even the 2016 Pinot Grigio. Plus my poached salmon with capers, tomatoes, onion and garlic. For dessert, canolis and lemon ricotta cake with a canoli filling and other goodies. Hope to see you this Sunday at the vineyard. For more info or to make your reservation, go to  https://squareup.com/store/reyes-winery/.