I spoke with both Barbour Vineyards (Butterdragon Hill) and Pina Vineyard Management (Baconbrook) over the last couple of days. Both of our vineyards are doing well and have weathered the extremely rainy spring.

Baconbrook is in full flower now and looks to have a heavy crop. We’ll have a better fruit estimate in a couple of weeks. The cover crop is extremely high and needs mowing again. Normally, we try to only have to mow once but all the wet weather has created a jungle of grass as well as vine growth. Pina will go through and spray to prevent mildew again this week. This is a follow up spraying to one they did about 10 days ago.
Butterdragon Hill does not look to have a especially large crop but the clusters seem to be forming well and uniformly across the vineyard. Barbour went through tying and tucking the canes up in to the trellis system. This practice will allow for more even sunlight getting to the flowers and vines. Some vineyards in the valley have had issues this year with capping where the flowers are supposed to shed their protective caps but the process is interrupted by the young flower clusters being wet. Barbour has seen no evidence of capping at Butterdragon.

We’ve also added a second set of drip lines down the rows at Butterdragon Hill. This addition will allow us to irrigate the bottom of the vineyard separately from the top which should improve quality overall and give us the ability to manage our irrigation more effectively. The soils at the bottom of the hill are thinner than towards the top meaning that they typically retain less water. In previous vintages, it was all or nothing regarding irrigation. Now, if the bottom needs irrigating, but the top doesn’t, we can better pinpoint the need.

The 10 day forecast for St. Helena is for sunny days with highs in the upper 70’s and lows around 50. Perfect growing weather!

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3060 White Sulphur Springs Rd
St Helena, CA 94574
t: (707) 200-3510
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