This past week, in his spare time, Vinomaker has been busy mowing and weed-whacking/strimming the tall, lush vegetation that has sprung up all over the vineyard. Alternate periods of rain and sunshine have resulted in a verdant extravaganza of weeds this spring. Besides looking rather unkempt, high vegetation in the vine rows can contribute to frost damage of the developing vintage. By effectively raising the floor of the vineyard, tall plants positively invite frost to settle right at the level of the succulent, new shoots on the grapevines. The uninterrupted flow of dense, cold air past the vines is extremely important.
In the long grass at the edge of the creek, I found a couple of runaway bell beans (Vicia faba) enjoying their reprieve, after a quick swim, from certain disking death over in the Far Niente vineyard a mere 100 yards away: a fate their siblings succumbed to just a few days ago. They will be safe here in the sanctuary I call Vinoland.