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July 16, 2006

Black Rot

UH OH. Big trouble. Yesterday I noticed several grape clusters with black shriveled berries, so last night when we got home from the birthday party I looked up some common fungus online. Sure enough, I came across the following article and pinpointed the issue.

Cornell Cooperative Extension

Looks like all the rain we had a few weeks ago has caused me a real problem. If I had to guess, I'd say we're going to lose 40% of the potential crop. What kills me is that I was absolutely diligent about my spray program, I was just stuck using that crappy wand sprayer while my $10,000 CIMA was stuck in Italy awaiting shipment. Seems that not getting the fungicide into the blooms early enough is a major cause of black rot infection.

Have to call Doug tomorrow and find out what the hell to do. On the bright side, I did manage to finish dropping the fruit, however it was clear that the last few rows were hardest hit by the black rot. Certainly due to the moisture trapped by the excess clusters and leaves.

Today wasn't all bad. We did some additional shooting for the HGTV show because Shannon's dad Roger and his wife Bev were in town for Tristan's birthday. Since they hadn't seen the site since the demolition, the crew miked them up down the road and captured their reactions as they drove up to the site. Obviously shocked, they couldn't get over the difference with the houses and outbuildings gone, and were blown away by the new view since some trees have been taken down. After we showed them around the site, we went into the vineyard so they could take a look at the progress there. Rog and Bev proved to be TV naturals and provided quite a few good sound bites, although they both seem to be pretty worried about the pace we're keeping.

After a few hours shooting, Shannon, Tristan, Roger and Bev headed out and I worked for a few more hours, until the heat wore me out and I was done for the day.

Posted by Stephen at July 16, 2006 9:39 PM