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December, 2013

LDV Winery
Dropped fruit due to bunch rot

Harvest this year was the most challenging yet. Bunch rot – two of the most dreaded words in our industry - hit us hard.

We had nine straight days of rain (the same system that flooded Colorado visited us first) with very little sun and wind to dry out the grapes. Bunch rot occurs when bacteria in the air meet the warm, moist environment of damp ripe grape clusters.

We usually have techniques we use to mitigate this problem, but this year, just too much rain, too often.

Throw in a freak hail storm that damaged the leaf canopy and impacted ripening and you have a rough go.

We literally had to leave tons and tons of fruit on the ground in the vineyard. Heartbreaking, after tending to the vineyard all spring and summer and anticipating a great harvest.

On the bright side, we brought in about the same amount of fruit as 2012. Our Viognier was so prolific we had to sell some of the fruit because we could not handle it all. Never saw that one coming!

We picked more Syrah than anticipated but the Petite Sirah and Grenache were most impacted by the bunch rot and yields were down from last year.
LDV Winery
A lot of beautiful Viognier

LDV Winery
Last day of 2013 Harvest & Crush
Mike, John, Diane, Curt & Daniel Celebrate
Somehow we survived and hopefully the wines will be as strong as the effort was to make them.

A big thanks to all of the “Crush Pad Junkies” as they are fondly called, including Sandi and Daniel Sanchez, Mike Bock, Brooks Bradbury, Mike Shea, Diane and John McNamara, Debra Hodges, and Camille Soto.

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