Latest Trends In Vineyard Plantings

John Duarte, Duarte Nursery

Editor’s Note: With the forecasts showing a shortage of winegrapes in the next few years, now looks like the best time to plant grapevines in an awfully long time. So we queried a few nurseries about how it’s going, eliciting responses from John Duarte, president of Duarte Nursery in Hughson, and Dustin Hooper, sales manager at Vintage Nurseries in Wasco.

How would you characterize the demand for wine grapevines? How would you compare the demand you’re seeing now with five years ago? To what factors do you attribute the current level of demand?

Duarte: Very strong. The winegrape industry is under planted to meet projected wine sales growth. Existing winegrape acreage is also aging on average as the industry has not replanted significantly in the last 10 years. Vines planted in the boom of the 1990s are turning 20 years old this decade — that is about the economic life of most vineyards.

Hooper: Winegrape varieties are in high demand right now and look to continue that way for the next few years. Five years ago we had steady growth year after year, but 2012 on has exceeded that steady growth by leaps and bounds. The demand can probably be attributed to short crush over the last few years, people waiting to see how the economy was going to do until now, and old vineyards needing to be replanted.

Is it the traditional leading varieties, Cabernet Sauvignon in reds and Chardonnay in whites, that are leading the way, or are other varieties selling better? What newly popular variety has been in the most demand at your nursery?

Duarte: Cabernet Sauvignon plantings are very strong. It looks like Cabernet will continue to be the king of red wines. Chardonnay is a bit different as Pinot Grigio, Muscato, and Sauvignon Blanc are all very popular. White wines are likely to have more variety in the future.

Hooper: Those varieties continue to be popular, but you are also seeing Muscat Alexandria, Colombard, Pinot Grigio, Chenin Blanc for whites; Barbera, Pinot Noir, Primitivo, Merlot, and Zinfandel for reds.

What percentage of growers know exactly what they want, and what percentage consult with you about what to plant? If they do ask questions regarding variety selection, what are the most common?

Duarte: Most all growers planting right now are planting for a specific winery contract. This means that they know what variety and vineyard design they are planting. Duarte Nursery field viticulturists are still consulted for input on clones, rootstocks, and spacing. Applications and best practices regarding our new Magnum and Ubervine products are offered also.

Hooper: Most large-scale growers are told by their wineries which variety/rootstock they should be planting (probably 75% in this market). The other smaller scale growers frequently ask about clones and rootstocks that will best work for their site. We generally look at their site and soil samples and help them make a decision.

What one piece of advice would you give a grower who is considering replanting?

Duarte: Get a contract that makes economic sense for the future. New vineyards are designed to produce higher outputs than older vineyards were. Current California farmland prices and global wine market realities demand that new vineyards are more intensively planted and farmed than in the past.

Hooper: Plan ahead and order your vines early. Most people do not realize they need to order their vines about 14 to 18 months in advance to get the exact combination they are looking for.

Preventing Red Blotch

As most growers know, there’s been a lot of talk over the past several months about the newly diagnosed disease, Red Blotch. We asked both Duarte and Hooper what they were doing at their nursery to ensure that all the vines they sell are free of the virus, whether growers are asking about Red Blotch, and if so, what they are telling them?

Hooper: We are testing all of our mother blocks, both scion and rootstock. As of now, we have not had any tests come back positive for Red Blotch from our certified mother blocks. We are mostly seeing it out in field selections coming from customers’ fields. Growers in Northern California and the Central Coast are asking the most about Red Blotch as they are seeing it more in their vineyards than the people in the Central Valley. We’re not sure if the climate in those areas plays into it or not. We are telling them as much as we know and what we are doing in the nursery, but there is still a lot to be learned about this disease.

Duarte:
• Duarte Nursery has tested all source blocks for Red Blotch and has eliminated all sources with any grapevine Red Blotch-associated virus (GRBaV) positive finds from 2013 and future production.
• Duarte Nursery has contacted all customers of 2012 deliveries sourced from GRBaV positive blocks and offered free replacements.
• Duarte Nursery has 10 million GRBaV tested clean certified rootstocks and 20 million GRBaV scion buds tested clean available for 2013 grafting.
• Duarte Nursery welcomes further testing of its source blocks and plant materials from our customers.

Topics: ,

Leave a Reply

Fruits Stories
CitrusMake Every Day Ag Day
March 31, 2015
Another National Ag Day came and went on March 18. Did you do anything to promote it this year? Even Read More
Farm ManagementLocation Is King When Marketing
March 31, 2015
University of Pennsylvania Wharton School marketing professor David Bell was being interviewed on my local NPR station about his recently Read More
Apples & PearsPink Lady Apple Production Continues To Grow
March 30, 2015
Total production is up nearly 50% over 2009, and is expected to increase 33% in the next three years. Read More
Laboratory beakers
CitrusGrowing Demand For Magnesium Nitrate Spurs TradeMark Nitrogen To Double Output
March 30, 2015
Via enhancements made to its manufacturing plant, Florida company is able to provide more of its product to various fertilizer distributors and retailers throughout the country. Read More
Apples & PearsHow Will We Sell All These Apples? [Opinion]
March 30, 2015
Apple production is reaching heights that would have been unthinkable two or three decades ago. That's great news for growers — if we can sell them all profitably, Read More
Apples & PearsSounding Off On GMOs: The Arctic Apple Decision
March 27, 2015
Industry leaders share their feelings on the recently approved genetically modified apples. Read More
BerriesBuilding A Better Black Raspberry
March 27, 2015
Studies focusing on consumer preference, aphid resistance, heat tolerance, and genetics aim to capitalize on an expanding market. Read More
The Latest
Washington Capitol building
Food SafetyBill To Halt Patchwork Of State GMO Labeling Laws
March 31, 2015
Reintroduced bill includes a new provision allowing for labeling products as GMO-free via USDA-certification process. Read More
Food SafetyFDA Holding Public Meeting On FSMA Implementation Strat…
March 31, 2015
Forum to provide opportunity to discuss planning efforts for the next phase of Food Safety Modernization Act implementation. Read More
CitrusMake Every Day Ag Day
March 31, 2015
Another National Ag Day came and went on March 18. Did you do anything to promote it this year? Even Read More
Farm ManagementLocation Is King When Marketing
March 31, 2015
University of Pennsylvania Wharton School marketing professor David Bell was being interviewed on my local NPR station about his recently Read More
Laboratory beakers
CitrusGrowing Demand For Magnesium Nitrate Spurs TradeMark Ni…
March 30, 2015
Via enhancements made to its manufacturing plant, Florida company is able to provide more of its product to various fertilizer distributors and retailers throughout the country. Read More
Apples & PearsHow Will We Sell All These Apples? [Opinion]
March 30, 2015
Apple production is reaching heights that would have been unthinkable two or three decades ago. That's great news for growers — if we can sell them all profitably, Read More
FruitsIncrease Your Knowledge By Using Tree Fruit Resources
March 27, 2015
Get educated with great resources in the tree fruit industry available at your fingertips. Read More
drought management; irrigation; water management
FruitsHow To Become A Soil Sleuth
March 26, 2015
To correctly apply the proper nutrients at the right rates, you need to know where your fields are deficient and how to correctly diagnose a disorder. Read More
Cold ProtectionWind Machine, Electric Pruners Donated To MSU Research …
March 25, 2015
New equipment to help protect research blocks from frost damage and provide center with latest technology. Read More
CitrusProposed Farm Bill Provision To Limit Payments To Non-F…
March 25, 2015
USDA has proposed a new rule which would limit payment to those who are only actively engaged in farming. Read More
FruitsHow To Get Started With Partnerships And Sponsorships
March 25, 2015
Mark Saunders of Saunders Farm says your business is never too small or too big to get more value for what you do on your farm. Read More
FruitsValue Through Partnerships And Sponsorships [Opinion]
March 25, 2015
Mark Saunders of Saunders Farms says admission is one way to get value for what you do, but sponsorships and partnerships are the next level. Read More
FruitsWorld Ag Expo 2015: New Tools For Fruit Growers
March 24, 2015
From wind machines to solar-powered pumps, here is some of the new equipment on display this year's edition of the nation's largest farm show. Read More
FruitsRare Leafhopper Found In Shipment At Delaware Port
March 24, 2015
This is the second time this pest has been discovered by U.S. Customs and Border Protection agriculture specialists. Read More
FruitsNew Pome, Citrus Thinning Tool Approved
March 24, 2015
Refine plant growth regulator receives federal registration. Read More
CitrusFarm Bureau Says WOTUS Rule Would Ignore Exemptions
March 24, 2015
Common farming practices may be vulnerable to Clean Water Act enforcement under the rule. Read More
FruitsUC-Davis Seed Biotech Center Receives Funds For Continu…
March 24, 2015
The university received $500,000 in funds toward a $2.5 million goal from seed company Limagrain. Read More
FruitsTips For Pear Psylla Management
March 24, 2015
Dormant oil applications should start as growers begin to experience warmer, mild weather. Read More