Posts Tagged ‘Vineyard work’

Vineyard views springtime! Cabbage and Garlic too?? Whattt?

Thursday, April 15th, 2010
Cabbage lookin' pretty good!

Cabbage lookin' pretty good!

Garlic coming up in rows!

Garlic coming up in rows!

Springtime vines

Springtime vines

It has been a pretty warm and dry spring so far. You never know if that is a good thing or not. It is great to get out and get some work done early but also if it get too warm too early bad things can happen too. Such as an early bud break in the vineyard that leads to all sorts of problems. Last year we got frozen in late May and that pretty much killed the grape harvest for the year.

We have lots on tap this year in the way of locally produced vegtables, fruit, wine and good times at Maize Valley so keep in touch, and come and see why Maize Valley IS the place to BE!

Vineyard/Crop/Events update @ Maize Valley: #Farm,#Ohiowine,#Agritourism

Friday, August 21st, 2009
Green Farmers' Market

Green Farmers' Market

Lookin' "South"
Readying for Battle

Readying for Battle

Chelle getting Blood Pressure Check at Cruise In

Chelle getting Blood Pressure Check at Cruise In

Wow, what a summer, the heat is here! I love it! Or at least I HATE plowing snow more, skiing on it cool, plowing not so much.

Things get sorta crazy in August, the weeds really pour the coal to it and grow like crazy as you can see in the Pumpkin update video. What a train wreck, nothing to be proud of there but as I said I would show “Warts and All”. Late season weed breakthrough with rain and heat, what a mess!! Frost should fix it lots of pumpkins out there.

Vintage Ohio, The Civil War Re-enactment, Farmers’ Markets, Kids in cross country, Did I mention weeds, Rain making grass grow everywhere, Did I mention weeds? Oh yea my main computer took a total CRASH, (all files backed up except “outlook”)

Thanks to all the folks visiting our ole’ green trucks at the Farmers’ Markets!!! Really getting some good sales! Thanks to all the folks coming out and buying wine and in the stores, sales good! Thanks to all the folks e-mailing and calling about fall activities like the Corn Maze, Pumpkin picking, campfires, wagon rides, the pumpkin cannon, pig races and more!!

Right now we are re-tooling and beginning the shift from growing season to harvest. Grapes changing color, pumpkins turning orange, fall is in our sights. Stay tuned for big news on the fall harvest agritourism events and activities. I might just be able to pull off a way cool added attraction this fall, check back too see!!

Check out the videos below sorry they jump around a bunch just trying to keep up with the work and the documentation of this summer’s progress and report it, it ain’t easy! Hopefully this winter I can sit down and make some better use of this data.

Take care

Vineyard update Three weeks after frost/freeze

Friday, June 12th, 2009
LaCrescent vines 23 days after frost

LaCrescent vines 23 days after frost

LaCrescent Vines 23 Days after hard frost/freeze

LaCrescent Vines 23 Days after hard frost/freeze

If you have been following along we have had a few entries reporting on the condition of our front vineyard that has the French American Hybrid variety LaCrescent vines. They really got hammered back on May 18th and 19th by an extremely hard frost that actually turned into a freeze before it was over.

I was really heartbreaking because this was this vineyards third year in production and things had really begun to look good and we had good blossom set and the vines looked pretty good considering the winter they had just endured. They just got fried, we lost about 90 percent of the exposed plant tissue, a few blossoms on the inside of the vine that were covered by a leaf or vine escaped but not many.

In the video you can see the secondary fruit set. While it is nice to see the vineyard finally getting a green “cast” to we expect only about half the crop we would have gotten with the original fruit set, but oh well such is life that is why you get rich farming.

Also look for postings on the new alcohol taxes coming down the line. If you voted for change here it comes!!! And hang on to your wallet! http://www.facebook.com/ext/share.php?sid=90372764563&h=GDvWQ&u=P7S5J&ref=mf

Do you know how you make a million dollars farming?? Start with Two Million!!

Traminette Vineyard, Training the vines and people

Wednesday, June 10th, 2009
Traminette Vines

Traminette Vines

Thad putting in the bamboo poles

Thad putting in the bamboo poles

Well sorry it has been a few days since I put some news up via this here ole’ Blog I know. It has just been hoppin’ here at Maize Valley. I am trying my best to get er’ done, but some days it just is not so easy. Mostly because pretty much all the content that I post we actually do first.

It is not just like I go out and taste some wine and tell somebody about what I think about it. We actually grow a lot of the vines along with a lot of other things then harvest them then make them into something cool, then market them so others can enjoy them. Along the way life happens and God willing and the creek don’t rise we make a living too. At the end of the day I’d rather have a good Dark Beer, Oatmeal Stout or something like that anyhow, now that’s what I can BODY!

I help coach my daughter’s softball team which we thought was just going to be terrible this year and who would have known it but we are 6 and 3 now and on a roll (won the last four games). Two blow outs and two dog fights, one with extra innings even! The girls are smiling and touching gloves and learning how to work through the tough spots in life. And isn’t that what coaching is all about I guess? I hope the girls someday look back and say “hey coach Bakan helped me get through a tough spot and I can do it again”, been there done that. The season has a long way to go but we have already done more than anybodies wildest dreams.

I suppose wine is sort of like that in some respects, no I don’t mean drink to make your troubles go away but rather wine brings people together and the net effect is more than just drinking or tasting the wine or deciding how “correct” or “unflawed” it is. But rather it sets the stage for people to interact in such a way that things get accomplished, relationships are built and things are learned that help you down the road if you get in a tough spot some day.

I feel so sorry for those that look at wine as a “thing” to only be evaluated and studied for its comparative value related to others like it. No, it can not be garbage either but there is so little to be gained by tearing some down just to elevate another. Life is just too short. Judge it to help you dial in your preference but don’t dig on someone else’s.

Vineyard update Traminette coming along fine

Thursday, June 4th, 2009
Thad pruning our Traminette vines

Thad pruning our Traminette vines

We had some winter kill and lost a couple more when we had the heavy frost/freeze but all in all our newest vineyard up at Evan Morris’s place is looking pretty good. In the video below Thad returns now that school is out for summer and is pinching off some of the unwanted growth on the vines.

Basically we are working towards getting two shoots to climb up onto the wire. We bring two up such that we have a bit of an insurance policy in case we lose one of the vines you still get fruit from that plant site. We will be checking back with this particular vineyard from time to time to show the progress it makes this season.

‘Traminette’ resulted from the cross, Joannes Seyve 23.416 x ‘Gew├╝rztraminer’.. This cross was made in 1965 by H.C. Barrett, then of the University of Illinois, with the intention of producing a large clustered table grape with the flavor of ‘Gew├╝rztraminer’. Seed from the cross were sent to Cornell’s grape breeding program where they were planted in 1968. Fruit were first observed in 1971 and the original vine was propagated in 1974 under the number NY65.533.13. The vine was initially described as a vigorous and productive green grape with moderately loose clusters.

Vineyard vine update, buds, suckers and more

Wednesday, May 13th, 2009
View down the row of our front vineyard

View down the row of our front vineyard

From the vines to the wines, we are getting busy! This time of year lots of things are starting to happen outside. We don’t have a real long growing season so the plants that live here need to get busy and get a lot done in a short period of time. Right now these plants just want to grow, sometimes too much.

A vineyard needs to be “Trained” into what you see it just doesn’t happen. We go over our vines as many as 6 times a year or more when they are young. The older they get in some respects the less work they become. Sort of like kids, well I guess that isn’t true either. Anyhow the work is just different when they are young and you are trying to get them on the right track in life….. gee maybe they are like my kids???

Here are a Couple short vids about what we are doing out in the vineyard right now.

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Work in new vineyard

Thursday, May 7th, 2009

It was a LONG and COLD winter in Marlboro Twp. aka “Hartville” Ohio. We hit 18 below zero for more than a couple of days in a row and got hurt in the vineyard. Being new to this we took our time doing our summer work of unhilling our grafted root stock vines and are still finishing up some of that now.

A grafted root stock is a fruit plant that has a different root stock than upper part or “Scion”. The reason for doing this is a desired fruit plant (or in our case grape variety) might have a root system that is not well suited for the location or has vigor issues dealing with dieases or the like. So you put a root stock on that helps to avoid the disavantages and allows you to grow a plant that you have a market for. This is also done in apple trees and a lot of ornamental plants as well. Learn more about grafting by following this link

The disavantage is that in colder climates like Ohio’s you have to protect that graft “Union” between the stock and the scion from extreme weather conditions. We do that by hilling the soil up onto the union thereby mitigating some of the effects of that winter weather has on the grafted plant. There are other methods such as wood bark and staw mulch undergoing research and are being used in limited fashion as well. They are much easier to use but the jury is still out on how well they protect and there is some concern about pathogens growing in an organic medium around the base of the plant.

In the video we show Thad Metzger a High School Science teacher at Louisville High School helping us out by removing the soil from the union and seeing how we can through the winter. The variety he is working on is called Traminette. It is a French American Hybrid white grape well suited for Ohio. It is similar to a Gewurztraminer in many ways and makes a nice light, clean slightly sweet wine.