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Negotiation Tips for Winegrape Growers

November 10th, 2015
Negotiation Tips for Winegrape Growers

Grape growers are expected to be competent at a wide-ranging of tasks.  For example, they have to be good at equipment maintenance, pruning, labor relations and finances, to list but a few of the skills that are necessary to succeed as a grower. Of all the skills that a grower must have, perhaps the most important is the ability to negotiate. Negotiation is a constant necessity for a grower both when…

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In the Vineyard with Paul Verdegaal

November 3rd, 2015
In the Vineyard with Paul Verdegaal

The 2015 Harvest came to a close by the second week of October.  Harvest began on the earliest date that most anyone can remember. It is an interesting year to say the least, but there have been previous harvest starts in July.   Let’s look back on some local observations from the recent past. Checking some of my notes; Zinfandel for red was picked in August in 2001, 2004 and…

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Lodi Growers Boost Knowledge about Grape Pest Management

October 20th, 2015
Lodi Growers Boost Knowledge about Grape Pest Management

The Lodi Winegrape Commission and the University of California Cooperative Extension (UCCE) have a long history of working together to achieve our common goal of communicating research insights about best management practices to Lodi growers. In light of this, the Commission partnered with UCCE to provide Lodi winegrowers with the most up to date grape pest management information. During 2014 and 2015 the Commission hosted a series educational meetings that were based around…

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Maximizing Cover Crop Benefits Through Selection and Management

October 12th, 2015
Maximizing Cover Crop Benefits Through Selection and Management

Cover crops provide an array of important benefits to vineyards.  These include direct benefits that improve soil tilth, build soil structure, enhance the root environment, limit soil erosion, and modify the vineyard environment.  Through these, we can gain additional, indirect benefits in the management of soil moisture, mineral nutrients, grapevine growth vigor and balance, wine grape yield and quality, and grapevine pests.  While any type of cover crop will provide…

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Managing Vineyard Mineral Efficiency Beyond the Four R’s

September 29th, 2015
Managing Vineyard Mineral Efficiency Beyond the Four R’s

External pressures on mineral nutrient use in  vineyards come from several directions. On the one hand, to remain competitive, we need to contain applied mineral nutrient costs even while costs of some fertilizers are being driven upward by the growing global fertilizer demand. On the other, our society increasingly expects applied mineral nutrient resources to either stay in vineyards or to leave only with the harvested fruit. These pressures, originating from disparate…

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Ciatti Global Market Update – September 2015

September 22nd, 2015
Ciatti Global Market Update – September 2015

“Like sands through the hourglass, so are the days of our lives” was a quote television catchphrase from a long‐running soap opera, which is appropriate for this global market update. With harvest in full swing in the Northern Hemisphere, buyers are truing up inventories and ensuring all programs will have good quality supply. The question at hand is:  what varietals will be short, what varietals will be long, and from where? Meanwhile,…

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Labratory Testing for Grapevine Diseases

September 8th, 2015
Labratory Testing for Grapevine Diseases

Some grapevine diseases can be identified easily in the field by signs of the pathogen, which include microscopic and macroscopic microbial cells, tissues, and structures. For example, the appearance of the powdery mildew fungus on the surface of infected leaves and fruit is quite characteristic (fig. 7.1). Some diseases, such as crown gall (fig. 7.2), are characterized by their symptoms, which are defined as abnormal plant growth caused by damage…

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Financial Assistance Available for Red Blotch Infected Vines

August 25th, 2015
Financial Assistance Available for Red Blotch Infected Vines

California winegrape growers with losses due to grapevine red blotch-associated virus (GRBaV), the causative agent of red blotch disease, may be eligible for financial assistance for vine replacement from the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Tree Assistance Program (TAP). The 2014 Farm Bill made TAP a permanent disaster program to provide financial assistance for qualifying growers to replant or rehabilitate eligible trees, bushes and vines damaged by natural disasters. TAP is administered by the USDA Farm Service Agency (FSA). Marianne…

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Comprehensive Vineyard Water Management

August 18th, 2015
Comprehensive Vineyard Water Management

Those of us involved in agriculture are well aware of the increasing concerns about water in California. Even before the current drought, new water regulations were in the works, irrigation district water costs were increasing, and in many locations, access to ground water supplies required deeper drilling than in the past. Going forward, there is no doubt vineyard water use will require our very best management skills. Now more than…

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Visual ID of Winegrape Viruses

August 11th, 2015
Visual ID of Winegrape Viruses

Visual identification of grapevine red blotch associated virus (GRBaV) may be a useful complement to lab testing of tissue samples. While not meant to replace the results from lab tests, visual identification may prove to be a useful method for quickly and cheaply assessing whether GRBaV is present in your vineyard and which vines are infected. However, doing so requires some training. One must know the symptoms well and be able…

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