WIMMERA winemakers are preparing for a decent harvest despite weather conditions not always tipping in their favour.
Norton Estate’s owner Chris Spence said he could not tell that the vines endured a dry spring and warm start to summer.
The Lower Norton vineyard also experienced frost for the first time, but Mr Spence said the vines recovered from the frost damage.
“We gave them some earlier nutritional feed to help with leaf growth and berry formation,” he said.
“The big rainfall event three weeks ago, gave the vines a massive boost with really good foliage, cane length and the fruit set is excellent.
“The vines were in fairly early bud formation when the frost hit, but it only damaged a small area of the vineyard.”
Mr Spence normally starts picking in mid-February, but he said he could start sooner if the warm weather lingered.
“Yielding in a small part of the vineyard will be low from the frost damage, but the rest will be great,” he said.
Barangaroo Boutique Wines was also affected by frost for the first time.
Manager Shelia McClure said the Shiraz variety was “significantly down,” but the other varieties had recovered for the damage.
“The vines are looking green and lush. We are setting ourselves up for a reasonable vintage,” she said.
Mrs McClure said the harvest has been pushed back two weeks and they expect to start picking in mid-March.
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