‘Tis the Season For Cold

December 23rd, 2013
‘Tis the Season For Cold

There may be ongoing and needed discussion about whether the climate is changing and who, or what, is causing it. But what we know for sure is that the season has changed from fall to winter, and over the past few weeks we have experienced an “arctic blast”. As I write this it is 45 F at 2:30 in the afternoon! It has been a while, but I recall that…

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Why “Per Acre” Spray Calibration No Longer Makes Sense

December 16th, 2013
Why “Per Acre” Spray Calibration No Longer Makes Sense

During my entire 34-year career as a Pest Control Adviser I have recommended the use of pesticides on a “per acre” basis and the growers have applied them on a “per acre” basis.  At the annual Farm Safety Day I teach a class on how to calibrate spray rigs, and on occasion astute growers have pointed out that this practice doesn’t really make sense. I have readily agreed with them. …

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Optimized Pruning Using Spurs on Cordon Trained Grapevines

December 9th, 2013
Optimized Pruning Using Spurs on Cordon Trained Grapevines

Wineries have come to expect and depend on delivery of high quality grapes from their growers, while at the same time, vineyard operational costs have reached new highs. Most wine grape growers have responded to these factors, striving for both production consistency and efficiency. Pruning is a vineyard management practice essential to both. Through pruning, growers select buds for channeling annual grapevine growth into foliage. In effect, pruning integrates the…

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Sustainable Winegrowing Certification: Why Do Growers Participate?

December 2nd, 2013
Sustainable Winegrowing Certification: Why Do Growers Participate?

Sustainable winegrowing certification programs in California, and other major domestic winegrowing regions, have gained traction as a market tool to inform consumer choice and promote grower adoption of sustainable practices. Prominent examples of such programs include the Lodi Winegrape Commission’s Lodi Rules program, the Central Coast Vineyard Team’s Sustainability in Practice (SIP) program, the California Sustainable Winegrowing Aliance’s California Certified Sustainable Winegrowing program, and the Napa Green Land program. However, little research…

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