Last Friday (24-01-2020), Matt visited Tomich Wines, who lost about a third of their vineyards in the recent Cuddle Creek Fires, to help out pruning some of the fire-ravaged vines.
Matt spent a lot of time pruning when he made wine over a decade ago in WA and said that on average, it normally takes 2-3 min per vine to prune, but in this instance it was taking them up to 8 minutes on each, with some vines needing to be cut off 10 inches from the base. “It was challenging pruning, cutting away the deadwood and prioritising the remaining growth with the hope of finding some healthy vines.” says Matt.
The challenge is to save the fresh growth while carefully clearing the deadwood. Their vines will need time to heal and regrow, with the hope that they will fruit again within the next two years and will provide a decent yield of fruit again in three to four years.
It’s going to be a long road to recovery, but for some others less affected by the fires, they have been fortunate enough for some regrowth already.