Breaking Bud

Anyone who lives in or has visited San Luis Obispo County in January or February knows that these winter months paint our hills with beautifully lush and bright green color.  But this year the lack of rain and a severe drought hindered such landscapes from developing.  During this period, the vineyards throughout the Edna Valley stay dormant, awaiting spring.

So when our Claiborne Vineyard’s buds began to break in March, we welcomed the new growth with open arms.  The term, bud break, is a stage in a vine’s development where the vine buds swell, allowing the first green shoots and leaves to sprout.  Tiny clusters begin to set and the shoots/leaves will grow rapidly in the following weeks.

Due to the warm and dry winter season, bud break started up a couple weeks earlier than usual.  Early bud break increases the risk of frost damage that can occur if temperatures drop to freezing.  Thankfully, our vineyard is nestled in part of the Edna Valley where the cool ocean breeze helps maintain ideal temperatures during this time.

In early May the vineyard’s fruit will be fully set and we will be able to gauge what kind of yields we’ll have this fall.  So much excitement ahead!

Planted in 2006, our Claiborne Vineyard became Claiborne & Churchill’s first ever estate vineyard.  We’ve seen the vineyard mature over the last several years, and we now produce over 200 cases of Estate Dry Riesling from the 2 acre plot.