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By Diane Kinney and Imed Dami, HCS-OSU

Our on-site restrictions remain in place due to the COVID-19 pandemic. We have resumed limited field and greenhouse work upon approval from the Dean of our college but common practices continue to have some delays.

Grape Phenology: 

In Wooster, we are just beginning to see veraison in our early ripening varieties (Marquette, La Crescent, and some table grapes). For the most part, clusters have marble-sized berries and we are seeing the beginning of berry touch. We are about 1 week behind 2019 at this time.

Frontenac blanc mid-July 2020

Photo: Frontenac blanc in mid-July 2020

Weather Conditions:

July has been a very hot and dry month. We are more than 2 inches behind in rainfall for the month, which is still 1.5” above the long-term cumulative rainfall average. This is greatly different than the past several years. Fortunately, the grapes seem to be doing well with the 1.38” we have recorded and are very clean.

As of the 28th, we have tracked 8 days over 90 oF.  Even so, our average daily temperatures are only slightly higher than normal at 75.5 oF. Even with the high temperatures during the day, we are nearly 100 GDD behind the long term with 1705 GDD.  

Cultural Practices:

The dry weather has provided us with more opportunities to continue working in the vineyard. We have been able to stay on schedule with leaf removal, crop estimation and cluster thinning. Training of newer vines has progressed well. Timely sprays protected us against severe damage from Japanese beetles earlier in the month. We expect to move forward with vine hedging next week and netting to follow up soon after as veraison progresses. We will begin berry sampling in mid-August to monitor fruit maturity for harvest determination.   

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Research Assistant Lorena Brown conducting cluster thinning after assessing crop estimation.   

Beginning July 2020, the Ohio Grape Electronic Newsletter (OGEN) will be transitioning from the traditional PDF format into single articles published through the OGEN blog. This transition will advance our communication capabilities with you! Below is a brief introduction to why and how the OGEN is changing.

Blog benefits:

  • Faster publishing of new content to better coincide with the timing of events in the vineyard and winery
  • Features “tags” and "categories" that provide quick searches for topic-specific articles
  • Easy to share individual articles via email and social media

How new content will be distributed:

All content will be posted on the Buckeye Appellation website (https://go.osu.edu/grapes). A monthly e-newsletter containing links to each month's published content, including blog posts, upcoming events, news articles, and The Grape Exchange, will be sent out through the OGEN email listserv. If you would like to have your email added to the listserv, please contact Maria Smith at smith.12720@osu.edu.

Will the past issues of OGEN remain available?

Yes, past issues of the OGEN will remain available for download and review under the “Blog” tab labeled "Newsletter/TGE".

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