Angélus takes you through the different stages of the vine cycle via a series of photos of a single Cabernet Franc vine. This series, entitled “A Cabernet Franc Story”, will be sent out on a monthly basis until the end of the year.
This first photo in the series was taken on 24th February, after the pruning had taken place and new stakes had been installed in the vineyard. It sums up well the quite rainy start to the season that we had in Saint-Émilion and is a good picture of the general state of the vineyard, which is green and with soils that have been very satisfactorily replenished with water.
Find our next editions on this very page, on our social media thank to the hashtag
#acabernetfrancstory and in the monthly magazine “Simple Wine News”.
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This second photo was taken on 26th March while the vines were in full bud. With the month of March being warmer than usual, the first bud-break in the vines actually occurred this year 10 days earlier than average.
Work in the vineyard has continued at pace thanks to the whole of the Angélus team rallying around to help. The canes have been tied to the wires, the bases of the vine trunks have been de-earthed, and the first sprays containing a copper sulphate base will be carried out over the coming days.
Finally, pheromone capsules have been installed across the whole of the vineyard in order to combat the European grapevine moth whose larvae feed on the interior of grapes. The term “sexual confusion” is used here to describe the effect of the pheromones which disrupts the sexual activity of the moths, thus drastically reducing the laying of their eggs. This technique, which figures in the list of specifications for organic farming practices, enables the use of traditional insecticides to be avoided.
This third photo was taken on 14th April when we were in the middle of inter-vine tilling, what we call “décavaillonnage”.
We had rain during much of the month of April, which forced our teams to carry out disease prevention work in many parts of the vineyard on foot, since the soils were too wet to use tractors and other equipment. This rain nevertheless did the vineyard a lot of good, because it replenished the soils’ water reserves. During this time we also carried out the task of removing any suckers from the vine trunks. We did this by hand, as always.
Right now we are getting alternating spells of hot sun and then rain. These conditions are conducive to outbreaks of fungal diseases in the vines, and this is something we are monitoring very carefully. However, the vines are shooting well and very evenly, and the future bunches promise a very good crop. The flowering process will be starting in a few weeks’ time.