Good Fruit Grower

February 15

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Page 28 of 39 GOOD FRUIT GROWER FEBRUARY 15, 2014 29 Decades following the end of Prohibition, Washington State University's Dr. Walter Clore, who traveled throughout the state searching for suitable wine grape sites, came to Clarkston and Lewiston. Clore convinced Lewiston meteorolo- gist Robert Wing to plant a small trial vineyard on the Lewiston side in 1972. "Their conclusion was that the area still was a great place to grow wine grapes," said Wasem. Wasem is a Clarkston pharmacist by day, but he made wine in his basement for years before launching Basalt Cellars. "Winemaking is in my genes," he said, noting that his grandfather made wine, as do rel- atives in Germany who have been tending grapevines for 300 years and have a 100-year old winery. He also has cousins working in north- ern California wineries. "I think winemaking is a genetic thing with me." In the 1990s, he found the perfect site for a vineyard and began trans- forming acres of noxious star thistle and cheat grass into a small vine- yard. Thus far, he's planted three acres with Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Syrah, Chardonnay, Petit Verdot, Malbec, and Zinfandel. He'll have about six acres when the parcel is completely planted. Steep, low-vigor site Elevation of his vineyard, which overlooks the Snake River, is 1,100 feet at the top, sloping downward to 925 feet. Because of the steepness, he had to terrace most of the block. "It's so steep that for the most part, everything has to be done by hand," said Wasem, adding that spraying is done with an ATV. "The slope provides great air drainage, and the vineyard receives early morning sun to warm it up quickly," he said. "The cold air just slides down to the river. I don't have any flat ground, low pockets, or any place for the cold air to stop." 1WT¿GNFU CTGRNCPVGF YKVJVJG OQUVRQRWNCT UGOKFYCTH CPFFYCTH XCTKGVKGU LIKE OUR ROOTSTOCK, our service will grow on you. ALL FRUIT TREE ROOTSTOCK IS OREGON CERTIFIED VIRUS FREE. M.7/M.26/M.9 EML A BUD 9 NIC ® 29 PAJAM 2 ® M.9 NAKB T-337 GENEVA ® 202/30/16/11 c a n b y , o r e g o n 5 0 3 - 2 6 3 - 6 4 0 5 T o l l F r e e 1 - 8 0 0 - 8 5 2 - 2 0 1 8 We also grow a great selection of rootstock varieties for apple, cherry, peach, pear and plum including: APPLE MALUS ANTONOVKA MALUS DOLGO MALUS DOMESTICA CHERRY PRUNUS AVIUM PRUNUS MAHALEB PRUNUS EML A COLT PEACH PRUNUS BESSEYI PRUNUS PERSICA 'LOVELL' PEAR OH X F 87/97/333/513 PYRUS CALLERYANA PYRUS COMMUNIS PYRUS USSURIENSIS PLUM PRUNUS CERASIFERA PRUNUS MARIANA PRUNUS MYROBAL AN PROVENCE QUINCE See our newly updated website, with all of our offerings & availabilities at w w w. w i l l a m e t t e n u r s e r i e s . c o m Inventories are low on many varieties. It's not too early to start thinking about next season. Let us know your needs so we can try to meet them for 2015. Wineries at Washington's geographical extremities Veranda Beach Cellars 2995 GDD Basalt Cellars 2829 GDD Graves Vineyard 3029 GDD • Westport Winery 1513 GDD • • • GDD is the long-term average of growing-degree days, a way to measure heat units. PHOTO COURTESY OF BASALT CELLARS Grapes

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