Earlier this year, I decided to plant grapevines in the backyard of our country house.
I’ve liked wine for a while. My grandfather had grapevines and made wine. I’ve done some home winemaking with fruit wines, and they’ve come out pretty good. And we have this plot of hillside land with good sun in the summer.
Maybe most of all, I was struck last year by a line in Hamilton, where a character talks about taking rest under your own vine. It sounded pretty good.
I bought vines from Viticulture A&M, who recommended grape varieties that would work well in our slaty soil and cold latitude. I got 60 vines, Frontenac Blanc, Amalfiina and Chardonnay 14. They should be ready to bear fruit in 3-4 years.
This weekend, I dug in and pruned, weeded, and tended the vines. It took hours, and I carted away 3 wheelbarrows worth of weeds. It’s apparently pretty important for the first year of growth.
I’m going to let the vines grow until late October, when I’ll prune them way back and set them up for the winter.