Harvest 2010 is Complete

Harvest 2010 is Complete

Harvest 2010 is over and the overhead bird netting is pushed back and wrapped. 2010 was the most challenging season we have experienced to date, with spring frost, cooler than normal temperatures and a wet fall. Our harvest was much smaller than normal, but through perseverance and extraordinary effort, we have some outstanding wines happily fermenting and perfect juice for the balsamic vinegar and verjus. In spite of the weather challenges, the vines were disease free and able to go into dormancy without any early fall frost damage. We were lucky to have had plenty of bright sunny days to build adequate sugar levels.

This is a La Niña year and the Meteorological Service of Canada is predicting the early onset of colder than normal temperatures and precipitation, so more snow. La Niña, Spanish for "the little girl", is the flip-side of the more desired Pacific phenomenon, El Niño, "the little boy" - a warming of the upper ocean waters off the coast of Peru and Ecuador.

During La Niña episodes such as during 2010, sea-surface temperatures can be as much as 3 or 4 degrees below normal. The cooler waters of La Niña generally weaken and modify the circulation of the jet stream, which in turn has a marked effect on the normal weather patterns for most of the globe. In the case of agriculture on the west coast of North America, temperatures have been consistently several degrees below normal, in our area we endured late Spring frost in May and a wet September and October presented additional challenges. The volcanic eruptions in Iceland also seem to have had a global impact on weather.

 

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