Friday, May 21, 2010

Freaks of nature.

I spent some time this morning stuffing and thinning shoots in the vineyard until it got a little too windy to continue, so I decided to finish the row I was in and go back inside. But not before I took a photograph of an unusual event that is going on in the canopy right now.
I have no explanation for this phenomenon that occurs in a handful of grapevines every spring, mostly in the Syrah, I just simply refer to it as "that double-meristem-thingy." I'm pretty sure the dividing of the apical meristem, into two growing tips, is simply a spontaneous somatic mutation. The clusters on these shoots never seem to be adversely affected, however it does result in twice the amount of fruit. The more the merrier.

7 comments:

Thud said...

You lost me after "I".

Weston said...

I'm with Thud, tho Ill blame the Sherry!

Affer said...

If you could identify the cause, there's a few million chaps going through Follicle Challenge that could be interested....

Do Bianchi said...

is one of them called Wolverine?

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Vinogirl said...

2B: I had no idea, thanks for letting me know.

Jamie said...

The tendrils and flower clusters are the same structure, essentially

If I'm interpreting the picture correctly, it seems that the tendrils have decided to become flower clusters

There's a gibberellin mutant that mark thomas and colleagues described in pinot meunier when all the tendrils become flower clusters

sounds like you have spotted an interesting somatic mutation - would be worth taking a cutting from this bit of the cane when it hardens

Vinogirl said...

Jamie, yes indeed clusters are merely 'modified tendrils' but this is the shoot deciding to split into a big divining-rod-type-thingy. It happens quite frequently in the Syrah vines...too frequent to bother cloning it - but hang on a min, may be I could market a grapevine that gets twice as many clusters chi-ching!