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Do you know the stages our vines go through from spring to fall? There are 4 stages before fall harvest and winter dormancy, including: bud break, flower clustering, fruit set and berry development. While some of these stages overlap, surely, depending on weather and varietal, this is the process the vines goes through each year:

Bud Break: When we remove the blankets in the late spring, we are often excited to see buds starting swell and then, burst into tiny leaves in some of our varietals. Getting a look at some green and seeing new shoots emerging is a sure sign that spring has arrived!

Flowering: Happening traditionally 6-8 weeks or so after bud break, this stage sees inflorescence developing clusters of flowers that will turn into grapes as the summer continues.

Fruit Set: After a successful pollination and fertilization of the flowers, small green berries are developed and grow that will turn into grapes. The berries grow for about 4-6 weeks until they reach their final size. From this stage, we can start to anticipate the amount of fruit to get an idea for harvest.

Berry Development: Also called veraison, this stage includes physical and chemical changes as we see colour change, along with lowered acidity, increased sugar content and development of flavours.

Come fall, it’s time to harvest the grapes! Watch for an upcoming post about then when’s and how’s of harvesting.