As July comes to an end the weather has been so continually hot that comparisons to the famous hot summer of 1976 have moved on to comparisons with the equally hot 1937.
As I write we have just had our first prolonged bout of rain in 8 weeks which was much needed, but has only cooled the temperatures down to the low 20°C’s which would be a pretty good summer for us usually.
The vines have been getting on with their work, putting their energy in to the grape clusters and, for the most part, little pruning has been required.
Coping well with the heat and intense long sun hours, the Chardonnay continues to be the most vigorous, the MVN3 the most productive.
My Ortega, however, hasn’t fared well at all and looks only one step away from dying off completely.
Perhaps struggling without water access, the canopies are thinning, with whole shoots/leaves turning brown in some places. The almost non-existent crop hasn’t developed much further either, and they generally look quite sad.
Even though temperatures are cooler this weekend and in to next week, further warm weather is on the way, with August looking to deliver much the same as July.