Saturday, August 16, 2008

Vineyard update

After a poor start to the year, with a cold, wet spring and slightly uneven flowering, the weather finally picked up in July with three weeks of warm sunshine. Our vines responded accordingly with rapid growth of vegetation, or 'vine vigour' as it is known in some parts of the world. Of course to counteract this, and concentrate the energy of the plant into the production of ripe fruit we have to work hard thinning the canopy, thus ensuring that the developing bunches receive the correct exposure.

In the final week of July the fine weather came to an end, and it would be fair to say that since then the weather has been what can only be described as changeable - some days good, and others not so good. As often happens in Galicia we have to keep a close eye on the vineyards for any evidence of disease, and when needs must, we have no alternative but to administer the appropriate treatment. Never ideal, but this is the reality of our climate.

At this moment we are probably about a month away from the start of the 2008 vintage, and (touch wood), it is looking like we might have a similar sized harvest to 2007, albeit that it is much to early to predict how the quality might compare.

As a footnote to any aspiring photographers amongst our readers, the above shot of our 'El Pazo' vineyard is actually an HDR image. If you click on the photo to reveal it's full size you will notice that the colours are very vivid, giving the picture a slightly surreal, almost exaggerated feel. This is achieved by marrying together five images taken from a fixed point, all with slightly different exposures, the overall result not only intensifying the colour, but also the shadow and highlights. More of this technique will no doubt appear in future postings.....

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