Grafting

On May 5, 2014 I had a crew from Angel Arias in Napa here to graft some of the Pinot Gris over to Pinot Noir. Graft expertsSince the Pinot Gris is over 20 years old, it would be a shame to not use them. I got the recommendation and contact information from Mike Etzel at Beau Freres. Arias have done quite a lot of regrafting in Oregon with excellent results.

I only had enough cuttings for 215 plants. The cuttings came from my friends Peter and Rebecca Work, that owns Ampelos Vineyard in Santa Rita Hills in California. The clone is 459, a fairly new clone that they were very impressed with. We grafted them on to the first 7 rows of the Northern Block of Pinot Gris.

Cut trunk

First we cut the existing vines with a saw at a point where they were straight.

Graft cutsThen the artist went to work. They cut by hand the cuttings into sticks with 2 buds each on them. The bottom was cut on an angle with a slice through the middle. Then 2 cuts at the top of the trunk with a slice in it and the cutting was them pushed into the trunk. 2 cuttings per trunk. Then it was wrapped with tape and a paste was added on top of the remaining trunk and where the graft was pushed into the trunk.

IMG_1484

The last, but very important step was to make a cut in the vines with a saw, low down on the trunk. This way the vine would bleed sap and not let it rise too vigorously up the trunk and actually push the new cuttings out. Every 4 days, we went through the new grafts and checked if they were wet on top. If they were, we made a new cut in the trunk, and if needed added more paste on the trunk. This continued for 6 weeks. The first few times, more than half of the vines were wet and got a new cut. Every time it was different vines needing a cut. Some vines were cut 8 times.

GraftBudgraftMay 27. Some of the buds are starting to push. On a couple of the smaller trunks, as below, they put in some bud grafts and they also look great.

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