Friday, 7 January 2011

January 7th, 2011

Wow, Just realised that I started the last post back in November. It is not going to be easy to start and maintain this blog!

Tuesday, 23 November 2010

November 23rd, 2010

So, last post 1st June. 7 months without a post. Time for an update I think!

Mid and late summer in the vineyard went well. The vines grew well and remained disease free. We kept some of the grapes on to make wine from.

Unfortunatally, as my time was limited some of the jobs either did not get done or did not get done properly ie bud rubbing and shoot trimmimg. As far as I can see no harm has been done and I will sort out any structural problems when I do the pruning.

Camping was bigger than ever in July, If I remember correctly we had ~20 families with hoards of children of all ages. As far as I know everyone had a great time.

Picked ~55Kg of grapes and made 40L of a Rose. Mainly Chardonnay with some Pinot Noir. First sampled on Christmas Day with very positive feedback.

One of my most exciting projects of 2010 was producing ~800 pints of cider. Managed to beg and scrump over a tonne of apples and with the help of James, Mark and my Mum we have 8 different blends in the cellar fermenting slowly and awaiting a tasting and blending session in the spring. If all goes well we will have a modest supply for Camping later in the summer.
Lost my

Today is a good day to start the posting again as it marks the start of my vineyard year. I managed to prune and tie down 50 vines this afternoon.
Mk 1 of my brazier worked well on the grass, but did not have the clearance in the mud. Mk 2
made - will test after the rain.

Must get on with tax return....

Tuesday, 1 June 2010

June 1st, 2010

Went to Browns to order the new part for the tractor, costly mistake - £205 + VAT.
Rained all morning.

May 31st, 2010

Kids away, nice day so Steph and I went bud rubbing. This is physically the most demanding job in the vineyard year, It involves bending/squatting down to remove all the lower buds and growth from each vine. 5000, squat thrusts - can my thighs take it? We started at the east end with the longest rows and managed 6 rows in total, ~600 vines.

May 30th, 2010

We are rostered to do lunch at the sailing club today. Made a Bolognase as the special and enjoyed the Laser racing.

Decided to go up to the vineyard to make a kerb at the entrance. I drove the tractor up to the vineyard and Steph picked me up so we could get the Landrover. I left the tractor by the gate on the hill.
Horror upon horror - when we returned 20mins later the hand break had slipped and the tractor had rolled down the hill into a tree. The front wheels were pointing in different directions and the Steering leaver is broken. Too stressed to take a picture. We managed to jack up the front of the tractor, straighten the wheels and Steph reversed it to the top of the hill. I had to steer the offside wheel by hand. I was absolutely devastated. My No1 Industrial accident fear involves handbreakes and gates, luckily no one was hurt and I am sure that the tractor can be fixed - its just gonna cost...

Funnily enough the same thing happened to George in exactly the same position a few years ago. Th tractor hit the same spot on the same tree - spooky!

May 29th, 2010

The kids are going to Turkey with grandparents this week.

May 28th, 2010

School inset day. Took the kids to the park to play, but managed to start reassembling the trailer. The new Suspension/axle units look fantastic and for the first time the wheels are straight.