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Cantina del Castello - wineshop

Cantina del Castello

Spring has arrived and the temperatures are great for both us and for our vineyards that now start the stage of bud break.

What are the vital stages of a grape vine?

All living things even plants go through different cycles of life and in this instance, we are talking about grape vines that start off from when they are planted.

We will briefly explain the life cycle of the grape vine in this article.

First, the vine from planting to about three years is in a phase of being unproductive, in terms of growing fruit. The timing for the plant to start making fruits (between 1-3 years) depends on the type of training system adopted.

After the third year, the vine reaches a phase where it starts to produce grapes. This leads the vine to produce constantly for 20 to 25 years.

Once the vine is about 30-40 years old the productivity being to decline every year until it stops.

Now that we have talked about the life cycle of a grape vine, we can now cover its yearly growth cycle.

Annual cycle of grape vine

The year of a vine begins by the end of March when the buds start opening and a liquid made of mainly sugar comes out of the cut made during pruning. This is stage is called bud breaking and the liquid coming out of the pruning wounds is called bleeding. The bleeding is a signal that the cellular activity started working again after the winter dormancy.

This phase of weeping is followed by the budding and therefore the birth of the first buds that grow by about 1-4 cm per day until mid-June. In this phase of budding, there are three important factors that have influence: environmental factors (temperature); biotic factors (position of the buds and vigor of the plant); cultivation techniques (form of farming, planting density and pruning).

Around May the plant start blooming. Very nice white flowers that are very delicate and from this flower the grapes will grow. This a very delicate stage and are influeced a lot by the weather.

From July to August there are the formation of the clusters which is called fruit set and in mid-August the veraison begins which is characterized by the colouring phase of the clusters. This phase mainly affects red berried grapes but in addition to the color gained during this phase there is also the ripening of the fruit and therefore the sugar and acid concentration.

In the period of September / October the harvest’s phase begins. Sometimes for early grapes the harvest happens aroun August.

This period may vary according to the type of grape and wine that will be produced. For sparkling wines, the harvest will be slightly earlier as more acidity is required, for dried / sweet wines the harvest will be postponed having a higher sugar content.

The last phase, on the other hand, concerns the winter season which is defined as dormant since the vine in this period ceases any type of cellular and vegetative activity, the leaves fall and the plant rests until next spring where the cycle will begin again.

Our vines have just begun the budding phase and we are really excited for this new vintage to come!

We hope it’s as beautiful as 2020!

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