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Tying Down Vines at Spring Hollow Vineyard:

Spring at Spring Hollow Vineyard is a bustling time, and this year has been no different. With over 3,000 vines to manage, the task of tying them down to the trellises is monumental. Thankfully, this endeavor has been a family affair, with my wife Sally and our daughter Fiona by my side every step of the way.

The Process
Tying down the vines is a crucial step in ensuring the health and productivity of our vineyard. Each vine needs careful attention as we secure them to the trellises, guiding their growth and ensuring they are well-supported. This labour-intensive task demands patience and precision, but the results are well worth the effort.

Weathering the Elements
Working in the vineyard means embracing all kinds of weather. This spring, we’ve experienced the full spectrum: bright, sunny days that make the work enjoyable; rainy days that turn the soil to mud; misty mornings that lend a magical quality to the vineyard; and breezy, cloudy days that are perfect for working without overheating.

No matter the weather, Sally, Fiona, and I have donned our work boots and set out to ensure all of our vines are properly tied down. It’s been a test of endurance and determination, but also a testament to our commitment and passion for what we do.

New Growth
Our hard work is beginning to pay off. The shoots on our vines are now 2-3 inches long, a promising sign of the season ahead. Even more exciting, the first grape flowers are starting to show. These delicate blossoms are the precursors to the grapes that will eventually be harvested, crushed, and turned into wine.

Seeing these first signs of growth is incredibly rewarding. It reminds us why we put in the effort and motivates us to continue tending to our vineyard with the same care and dedication.

Family Effort
Working alongside Sally and Fiona has made this experience even more special. It’s not just about managing the vineyard; it’s about sharing moments and creating memories together. Whether we’re laughing under a clear blue sky or pushing through a downpour, we’re in it together.

Our vineyard is more than just a piece of land—it’s a testament to our family’s hard work, resilience, and love for what we do. Tying down the vines is just one chapter in our story, but it’s a vital one that sets the stage for a fruitful season ahead.

As we look forward to the coming months, we’re excited to see how our vineyard grows and thrives. The journey is far from over, but with each tied vine and every new shoot, we’re reminded of the beauty and rewards that come from working this land as a family.

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Fast-Growing Vines and Under Vine Mowing

Welcome back to our vineyard blog, where we aim to keep you informed about the day-to-day operations at Spring Hollow Vineyard.  In this second post, we’re delving into the world of fast-growing vines like our Rondo and Solaris, and the importance of under vine mowing in maintaining a healthy vineyard ecosystem without the use of chemicals. 

One of the key aspects of vineyard management is ensuring the optimal growth and development of our vines.  Trellis systems provide a structure for the vines to grow along, allowing us to efficiently manage their growth.  By training the fast-growing vines to be tucked in and secured to the trellis wires, we create a controlled environment that encourages upward growth.  This also prevents them from sagging or sprawling across the ground.  This elevation further aids in promoting air circulation, reducing disease risks, and simplifying vineyard maintenance tasks. 

In any vineyard, managing the competition between and under the vines and other plant life is crucial.  Under vine mowing is an effective technique employed to maintain the balance between healthy vine growth and minimizing competition from weeds and other vegetation creating a clear zone around the base of each vine, reducing competition for water, nutrients, and sunlight.  This practice helps the grapevines to focus their resources on fruit production, leading to improved grape quality and yield without harsh chemical use. 

Under vine mowing also aids in preventing the growth of cover crops or weeds that can harbour pests or diseases detrimental to the vineyard. Furthermore, the mowed vegetation can be mulched, returning organic matter to the soil and enhancing its fertility, which is essential for sustainable vineyard practices. 

At our vineyard, we strive to optimize the growth of our grapevines to produce exceptional wines. Through the strategic tucking of fast-growing vines into trellis wires, we harness their potential for maximum productivity and grape quality. Additionally, our meticulous under vine mowing practices ensure that the vines face minimal competition, resulting in healthier vines and a thriving vineyard ecosystem. 

Stay tuned for more updates on the day-to-day running of our vineyard, as we continue to share insights and techniques that contribute to the cultivation of extraordinary grapes and the crafting of fine Welsh wines.  

#vineyarddogs 

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Spring Hollow Vineyard in Full Bloom: A Season of Sunshine and Growth

Introduction: Welcome to our vineyard blog, where we would like to share the latest updates and stories from the world of growing grapes for winemaking in South West Wales.  Join us as we explore the captivating beauty of our vineyard during the ever changing Welsh weather.

Spring Hollow Vineyard – Rondo
Inflorescence (Grape Flowers)

The enchanting display of the tiny inflorescence in bloom are delicate little clusters of flowers and the key to the vine’s reproductive cycle, transforming into the grapes that will mature over the coming months.  Although the inflorescences are self-pollinating, the bees and other pollinators are still busy amidst the vines, ensuring successful pollination and setting the stage for a fruitful harvest.

The current hot summer days are bringing abundant sunshine and warmth, creating an ideal environment for vine growth. The sunlight provides energy to the vines, nurturing them through the critical stages of flowering and fruit set, and will contribute to the development of flavourful grapes to enhance our wines.

As we embrace this unusually warm weather and witness the delicate inflorescence in our vineyards, we anticipate the upcoming harvest with excitement. Stay tuned as we document the journey from flowering to harvest and the creation of exceptionally good Welsh wines that capture the essence of our remarkable land.

Cheers to all Welsh vineyards in full bloom!