How – To Prune Vineyard

So our objective today is to cut off last seasons growth to keep the structure of the vine in a manageable form.

We are going to cut off 90% of what grew last year and leave two canes to lay down for next years growth.

So we’ve got our vine.

This is a bilateral vertical shoot position trellis, meaning that it’s a vertical shoot as you can see the rows are tucked in to the wires.

Bilateral meaning we have two arms, some vineyards nowadays are getting planted at a closer spacing and they will sometimes only have one arm.

So we have our trunk, let’s see if this works better.

This will be our trellis wire.

These are shoots that grew last year.

When I come to a vine to prune it, the first thing I look for is which canes I want to keep.

Which are the ones that I want to lay down.

So let’s say I pick this one and this one.

Everything else is going to get cut off and pulled out of the trellis and laid in the row to be chopped later.

So we’ll make a cut here and here.

And then you can also, to pull the brush out, because they’re in the wires they get tangled up in there and it can be kind of a pain.

I find that the more times you cut it the easier it is to pull it out.

So I’ll pull and if it doesn’t come out, I’ll cut it.

If it still doesn’t come out, I’ll cut somewhere else.

I basically will just keep cutting until it comes out with one arm.

I don’t want to see anybody doing this and yanking it out.

You might wack your neighbor, you might throw your back out, it’s easier, believe me, just to cut it the tendrils and stuff will get wound up in the wires, and I’ll show you when we get out there.

So we have the head area here, this is where we want our canes that we keep to originate from, to keep the form.

If we picked one of these canes down here to lay down, we have this area that’s not being utilized.

We want to fill, the objective is to fill the linear footage of the wire so that there’s a bud every four inches in an ideal world.

That doesn’t happen but, if we lay this one down here we have this are where there’s potentially no buds and we are not using it.

The form of the vine just gets out of control if it gets pruned poorly year. after year.

Three good canes, we’ll put another one here, we want to leave three good canes, get rid of everything else.

I tend to clean them up a little bit, meaning cut off tendrils or lateral shoots so it’s just a nice clean cane.

Then I’ll tip it usually right before the top wire just to make it easier to wrap later.

Good wood is critical.

We always want to lay down a good cane, that is going to be our fruit for the next year.

If we lay down a good cane that has good viable buds in it, we have a good crop next year.

If we lay down a weak cane that’s skinny, it might not be able to support the growth, the vascular tissue might not be enough to support that many mouths to feed.

The clusters are sinks.

We also don’t want bowl canes, bowl cane is one that is really big in diameter.

They’re usually from second year growth.

A latent bud that had pushed the year before for some reason.

That’s something like as big around as your thumb.

The reason we don’t want those is because the internodes are going to be like a foot.

And we don’t want that.

Perfect internode length is three to five per foot.

So four per foot is ideal.

Where your canes originate from is important.

We want them to originate from the head, but we also want them to be able to be laid down meaning they need to bend at a 90 degree angle to lay down on this wire.

After pruning, these guys will get tied to the fruiting wire and if they’re above that fruiting wire, the angle doesn’t work.

You are gonna try and bend it down and it’s going to break off.

One fist in Spanish, one puño.

We want one puño between shoots and also below, we want our shoots to originate from about that distant below the fruiting wire.

That gives us enough room to bend it onto the fruiting wire.

Does this make sense, is there any questions.


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