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Vignobles Dulon - 133 Grand Jean - 33760 SOULIGNAC - Tél: +33 5 56 23 69 16 - Fax: +33 5 57 34 41 29 © 2012 Réalisé par AUM WEB
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Work in the Vineyard

All the work done during the vine-growing steps are done to improve the quality of the grapes picked-up and to master the energy of the plants. We can discern different steps of the work in the vineyard:

The pruning is the most important work to leave space to the machines and to delete the useless branches. To split correctly the grapes, we keep two branches to hold the fruits (called double "guyot" pruning). This sharing-out reduces the risk of rot on grapes. Also, in April, we do a de-budding, it means that we eliminate some buds to master the yield and the number of branches. The less fruits and branches we have, the better the sap will feed them...

The thinning-out consists in removing useless branches from the plant to focus the sap on the fruits.

In July, we do a tying-up, which means that we maintain all the branches between wires. This leaves some space for the machines and allow the grapes to have a better sun exposure.

The topping and the trimming, done in June-July-August consist in cutting too long branches to reduce the energy of the plant and to leave space to the machines. Also it avoids that all the sap goes into the leaves instead of the fruits.

Between mid-July and mid-August, we do a thinning-out to remove all the leaves which hide the grapes from the sun. The result is a better exposure to sun for maturation and a reduction of humidity around grapes which means less diseases. The last point is that the picking-up is easier once the leaves have been removed.

To improve the quality of the harvest, we get off some green grapes to point the energy of the plant on the grape remaining. Then the grapes are perfectly ripe.
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The Vine Development

After the dormancy period of winter, buds appear when temperatures are gowing up.  In the vineyard facing the Garonne River, where temperatures are smoother due to the river, the bud burst starts in early spring. This steps really depends on the climate of each year, but also on the grape variety, on the pruning date and on the age of the vine. This is a very important moment where every frost would damage the delicate buds holding the future grapes. The flowering step follows 8 to 12 weeks after the bud burst and lasts 7 to 15 days. Small flowers are pollinated to give fruits or leaves. Strong winds or cold and humid climate can detract the flowering, so the coming crop. In July, these flowers let appear small grapes. This step is the setting of the vine for the year. Leaves and branches grow very fast at that time to increase the photosynthesis to feed the berries in sugar. In early August, the small green and sturdy berries get bigger and more supple. This the beginning of the slow maturing process, acidity in berries is gowing down while sugar content increases. Usually, we say that the harvest will start 40 days after this step.