I think we have finally turned the corner and Winter is behind us. It feels good to be outside and not have your hands freeze or the joy of not wearing heavy gloves. Still need the thin ones though. Started pruning in earnest this past week. The upper field was started today and should be done in two weeks. Just in time as we have our Babydoll Southdown Ewes who will be due just about that time. The center field with the Malbec and Cab Franke is pruned and yes there is tying to be done. There really is a tremendous amount of work that goes into making the fields look good for the arrival of bloom.
All of the cuttings will need to be gathered into piles and burned, afterwards I plan to sow some of the rows in rye, peas, mustard and orchard grass. This will help put back some organic material and fix some nitrogen in the soil. Trying really hard to be earth friendly.
Our barrel of Cabernet Sauvignon is turning out to be a wonderful wine. Added one pound of medium toast oak chips to give it some of that oak essence that we all love. The kids made their own Riesling last year and it is settling out quite well in the new 132 gal stainless tank. The tank is a Marchisio from Italy, a great SS tank with a lid that seals out oxygen.
All three of our Babydoll Sheep are with lambs and should have theirs by early April. I am still in awe as our four month old Basil the Ram, did the job he was supposed to late last Fall. On March 8th, they were sheared of their wool, so anyone interested in raw wool, give me a shout. The ewes should be ready to spring their lambs out to the world in a few weeks. Since this is a first time for me and lambing I have armed myself with help from the Kittitas County Sheep Growers Association, ample sheets, iodine, plastic gloves for assisting if the ewe needs it.
My mother is here at the vineyard and still needing care. Her foot has healed but her pride has not. She wants to be 50 again. You just cannot blame her.
All of the above was never posted and was lost to the cyber world. Fortunately, it was there somewhere in cache so now I can get all the above caught up.
The Ewes have had their lambs except for Jenny who lost hers. Beckett the best mom of the group delivered twins without a hitch and we named them Misty and brother Vinnie.
Kelby delivered one ewe lamb with great difficulty four days after Beckett but I finally had to intervene and delivered Buttercup who emerged all yellow and orange. She was extremely tiny and to the present I am bottle feeding her daily. She has come from 3.25 lbs, to 7.5 in 10 days. She is going to be just fine and is keeping up with her cousins.
On March 30th we were delighted to have Michael Migliore and his delightful wife Yancy stay with us after Michael lectured at CWU on growing hybrid grape varieties in Kittitas County. Michael is owner of White Cliffs Vineyard in New York State.. John Hudelson on right, Michael to his right, Jan Toth and Sandor Toth .
Professor John Hudelson and some of his students at CWU put together a great program that brought Michael here to teach us that Vinifera is not the only grape that we should plant here in this part of the Columbia Valley AVA.
So much has happened in the last few months and I need to apologize for this late posting.