Friday, January 30, 2009

Heat wave in Southern Australia

A period of extended extreme heat has hit the southeastern corner of Australia. Nuriootpa here in the Barossa Valley is now into it's 4th consecutive day of more than 40C (104F) temperatures. The maximum on Wed. 28th reached 44.1C (111F). We have another 5 days out of the next 7 forecast to be at or above 40C.
We are already seeing signs of scorching of our grapes, with Riesling being the worst affected variety. We are irrigating continuously at present (each block will be getting a drink about every 4th-5th day), as this is the only thing we can do to help our vines cope with the heat. Sugar levels are climbing and we will be starting harvest this coming Mon. night. We will be harvesting all of our Sauvignon Blanc this coming week and I would expect that some Chardonnay will also be picked next week.

2 comments:

Adam said...

Hope you have a good harvest and that you and yours are not impacted by the fires.

Mad Dog said...

Thanks' Adam. We have now started our harvest. The wildfires have mostly been in Victoria and will not affect our vintage in any way. My heart does go out to the many people that have been affected by them.