Preventing Mildew

Chardonnay grapes in evening.

Late July is a time that Ramon is particularly vigilant in the vineyard for mildew in the bunches. He says he smells it if it is present as he walks through the vines. We spray fermented equisetum tea (508) at the new and full moon (a ground spray, which encourages the death forces to stay on the ground and not in the bunches) and until veraison, we spray sulfur, although the 508 tea allows us to use much less sulfur. Ramon has also pulled leaves to allow air to flow, being careful to not pull too many so the grapes get sunburned. He says this is a particular time of tension as we have foggy mornings this time of year which bring dampness.