garden

Pining for Pinot

I am not sure which sage said it first, but all good things take time. And it seems the really good things take a really long time. Case in point, the scruffy little grape vines we put into the ground from bareroot stock a few months back. I have never been accused of being a planner; oft choosing spontaneity and the risk of getting lost over even the basics of knowing where I want to go (more on that later I am sure).  However, gardening, and the thrill of being able to eat something beautiful that I put into the ground a few months before, has changed my ways.. at least in part. On a cold winter day, daydreaming about the greenery and growth of summer, I picked up three little dormant grape vines from the garden store down the road. I was skeptical at first that the plastic containers they came in contained anything at all. A small stick dipped in what appeared to be old donut frosting emerged a couple inches from the soil, but it took a great amount of imagination to picture anything sprouting forth from the stick. Then, back at the homestead, I promptly forgot all about these little geL1220623ms, and relegated them to their containers for months as we endured the coastal California rains. As I may have mentioned previously, I often get carried away in garden stores, coming home with armfuls of possibility, only to face a rational hubby asking me where I plan to put everything in our postage-stamp sized yard. But the grapes, the grapes already had a place of honor set aside at our home and my hubby was the one who was excited by this purchase. Having worked on a beautiful vineyard run by his good friend,
Tom, Chris was the perfect candidate for tending the grape tendrils, and already promised to try his luck at making wine, should we ever grow enough grapes. However, by the time we finally got the little plants into the ground, they had been neglected for months and I was unsure whether there was any life left. Not to mention, when I pulled the vines out of their containers, the roots appeared to be incredibly shallow and I was convinced I had broken them all off in the planting process. Despite our missteps in their nascent months, a couple weeks back, all three vines spurted forth with life! (I had a very Dr. Frankenstein like moment and shouted “they’re alive!!!” when I saw their first leaf buds). But now the waiting begins. Nothing beats a great glass of pinot after a long day of work, and the thought of coming home to a wonderful glass of homegrown wine, is too tantalizing to resist. However, I am going to have to wait a few years it sounds like to taste the fruits of our labors. Pinot grapes are one of the oldest strains of grapes, having been cultivated across the globe. And while they apparently fare well in our cool coastal climate, they take their sweet time to develop fruit. According to Tom, he expects to get about one bottle of wine per plant at his family vineyard, but for us it will probably take a few years to get enough grapes to scrap together a single bottle. But oh how sweet it could taste…I just have to wait 🙂

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