Dear Indiana Winemakers and Grape Growers,
As June closes, it's time to evaluate the grape crop this year. So far it looks like we are setting up for a good harvest. That should make the wineries happy after the near total crop loss last year. Grapes are at the bunch closure stage in central and northern areas. Most of the vines we retrained last summer are producing a good crop. We expect about a half crop on the vines we retrained, and a full crop on the super cold hardy varieties that handled the Polar Vortex of 2014. Overall, the crop look very good in our trials and at commercial vineyards we've visited. That said...I've received several reports of black rot on grapes this year, and reports of downy mildew showing up earlier than normal. That's not surprising considering all the rain we've had. In addition, Japanese beetle adults emerged recently. So the work in the vineyard continues. Hopefully the rest of the season goes well and we'll have an excellent harvest this fall.
I've included articles about these vineyard issues in the latest edition of Facts for Fancy Fruit newsletter. You can access the newsletter at: http://www.hort.purdue.edu/fff/fff.shtml
It was good seeing several of you at the Indiana Horticulture Society Summer Field Day in Lafayette earlier this month. We had a great turnout of over 70 growers, several which grow grapes.
Don't forget to attend the Indiana Winery and Vineyard Association Summer meeting on July 21 at Country Heritage Winery in La Otto. Find information at: http://tinyurl.com/nwsbrhk
Another meeting that may be of interest is the Southwest Purdue Agricultural Center Field Day, July 9 at SWPAC near Vincennes. I'll be there to talk about grape production. More information can be found at: https://ag.purdue.edu/arp/pac/Pages/Field-Days.aspx
Professor of Viticulture