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Post Fri Dec 22, 2017 10:05 pm
stewartwillsher User avatar

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Location: Western Spain
Here we go again; the annual vine pruning of approximately five hundred parras is just done.
Our Tempranillo variety is traditionally grown on well drained terraces (ours are such) without staking or wiring, but just left to do their own thing.
This does mean that some, not all thankfully, go crazy and produce new wood every year, several metres long, often getting into nearby branches of fig or olive trees.
This does not seem to do any harm, but pruning also entails hauling the long vines out of the trees.
The vines wrap tendrils around the tree branches which makes the job much harder.
We also have a nice new fence along the Western edge of the finca, which those vines able to grab hold of it, had!
Pruning, once you get the hang of it is quite simple and quick.
Consensus says to leave two new buds before the cut, and any branches that have not produced new wood, cut right back.
No doubt a professional viticulturist would find fault in my simplicity, but we have been fairly productive all the time I have been giving them a haircut.
If the vine is in mid-terrace, then I get a shift on shuffling round it with a snip a second achieved; easy peasy.
The ones on the edge of a level take longer and might need to be attacked from above and below, especially when I am in danger of leaning too far and taking a two metre tumble.
This, with a little diligence has been avoided thus far in the last dozen years, and hope that continues.
Because I am creaking a bit with age, and bending over tends to seize me up after a while, I limit myself to a couple of hours at a go.
But as there is no rush (the vines won't start shooting for a couple of months) I can do the lot, bit by bit ("poco a poco" as the Spaniards put it) OK, on my own.
It is very satisfying to approach a vine with limbs pointing out in all directions like a startled alien, and reduce it to a neat compact plant ready for the new season's growth.
Crunching through loads of fallen and drying fig leaves (and fig trees produce a copious quantity of large leaves) is fun, if a little childish.
I am quite pleased with myself; I estimate approx eight hours work which I think equates to just under a minute per vine.
The weather was kind, if a little chilly, so well wrapped up; wife shouting clothing instructions before heading out each time.
It is a good excuse to visit all parts of the land, so an opportunity to check all is well; which it seems to be, with only a small section of the irrigation channel needing clearing out of leaves and some fallen stone from the wall above.
I have attached a sample before and after pruning snaps, showing how ruthless the cuts are.

Next up - possibly after Crimble, the fruit trees and oaks.
Two metre ali ladder against trunk; climb up into tree; long handled pruners to cut all new vertical shoots that will never produce fruit; job done.
Dozens of indigenous Spanish oaks are a pain as they grow fast and unpredictable, so most pruning is to make them less intrusive on either us or other trees.
I have a wicked tool in my armoury for them; it is a telescopic pole electric pruner which is just a small chain saw on a stick, but reaches about three metres (Wolf Creek PT75).
It's a bit heavy, felt more if not near vertical.
Gets the job done very quickly.
Our chap will do olives and figs in the new year, thank goodness; then burn all the rubbish when we get a permit.
Attachments
b5vinewall.jpg
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b5vinefig.jpg
b5vinefig.jpg (95.07 KiB) Viewed 180 times
b4vinewall.jpg
b4vinewall.jpg (89.99 KiB) Viewed 180 times
b4vinefig.jpg
b4vinefig.jpg (128.97 KiB) Viewed 180 times
when ducks in a row, will buy an RCZ


Post Thu Jan 18, 2018 9:39 pm
Plecodoras User avatar

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Well I'm not coming to your barbers shop !!!

Sounds like you need a drone to inspect all the corners of your finca, and have a little fun too.

Of course I know such a person with one but he'd require watering and feeding for his fees LOL !!!

Eh and like your lad I'm from gud ol Yorkshire - so tha can see thee means to mi madness !!!

:beer:
:lol: Laugh and the whole world laughs with you.... or is that at you? :lol:

Post Thu Jan 18, 2018 11:57 pm
stewartwillsher User avatar

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Posts: 146
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Location: Western Spain
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when ducks in a row, will buy an RCZ


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