Vineyard & Winery Management

January - February 2012

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HARVEST REPORT 2011HARVEST Reports from Major U.S. Wine Regions ainy, unseasonably cold, late: These words sum up the 2011 season from California's Central Valley all the way north to Washington state. Those who thought that 2010 was difficult found themselves revising that opinion compared to the chal- lenges of 2011. From major frost damage in the Central Coast to delayed bloom and poor set in many Northern California vineyards, California growers certainly had their hands full. Cooler-than-normal summer temperatures and late- season rains didn't help matters, and Botrytis became a major issue across the state. The good news for grow- ers was that, due to crop losses in many areas, winer- ies were actively shopping for fruit. In the Pacific Northwest, Washington state grow- ers experienced deja vu, as 2010 conditions repeated themselves with a cool spring, delayed bloom, late har- vest and reduced yields. Oregon also experienced cool- er-than-normal temperatures during the first half of the season, but late-season heat helped turn things around. Birds were not an issue in 2011, and many growers reported higher yields than in 2010. The growing season in the East got off to a promis- ing start, but as it unfolded, growers were challenged with excessive rain, the worst flooding in a generation in some areas, and a virtual plague of birds. Texas vint- ners were hit by a second year of drought. However, those in Florida, Georgia and Michigan were treated to an excellent year. 44 VINEYARD & WINERY MANAGEMENT JAN - FEB 2012 After an uncomfortably bumpy ride, California winegrowers were happy to see the end of the 2011 harvest. Photo: Think- stock/Peter Ginter WWW.VWM-ONLINE.COM CALIFORNIA By Glenn McGourty For California winegrowers, the 2011 vintage was like being on a jet that hits serious turbulence – a very unpleasant and somewhat scary experience, with little that anyone could do about it.

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