Tuesday, September 21, 2010


See the hammock that adorns the two trees in this picture? 

It's just for show. 

This year, it was better used as a photography accessory than it was for its intended purpose- a nap.  But it does create the illusion of a serene setting in the forefront of the vineyard, doesn't it? 

I had this idea that once harvest was done, it would mean relaxation, a little reprieve from vineyard work before we'd have to start back up again with trellis work. I had envisioned finally taking a little snoozer in that hammock since it has remained vacant all summer long, with the exception of kids age 5 and under who like to play in it. 

But I haven't been able to do this for the following reasons:

1. No sooner had we picked the last grape than Aaron was back out there putting up trellis posts for the vines we planted this spring, tilling up grass, and spraying weeds. His energy is endless! I have spent weekend days following him around taping and stapling up vines onto the wire that he's been stringing up.  This needs to get done now before the vines start to harden off so that they have their correct shape for winter.  Long story short, how lazy would I feel if I just sat in the hammock and watched him do all this by himself?  And if I'm not able to keep up with him outside, I am probably cleaning the house, feeding the dogs, cooking dinner...or going to the bathroom. 

2.  If I did find the time to sneak in the hammock, there is no doubt the dogs would find me there and try to climb in with me.  Trust me.  They have tried before.  And 200 lbs of dog + pregnant woman in a hammock does NOT equal relaxation.

3.  I'm afraid, if I am able to overcome #1 and #2, that if I do get in the hammock, I might not be able to get out!  The ab muscles required to rock yourself up out of the crescent shape are long gone.

Anyway, my dreams of napping in the hammock are dashed, at least for the time being.  Maybe later next month when I can take in the fall foliage and Aaron is available to pull me out if I need help.

Here is a taste of what we (and by "we" I really mean mostly Aaron), have been working on this month. Those of you who helped with the planting party in May, thought you'd want to see how those vines did this growing season.

Pretty well!  Can you see all the green growing up on the bamboo?  Aaron just tilled up the grass between the rows so we can replant grass seed because...

well, too many weeds were sneaking up and it was easier to start from scratch. So we'll have nice fresh grass next spring for these vines.

We have decided to take a break from planting next year.  At least not nearly as many vines.  I think Aaron has 100 on order of a new grape, Frontenac Blanc, that was recently released from the U of M and we wanted to jump on that right away! 

So these 4.5 acres adjacent to the 5.5 acre vineyard will remain a vacant field for the time being, ready for expansion in subsequent years.  In the meantime, we plan to focus on the winery and manage the 3500 vines we've accumulated the past few years!  I think that's a good start for now!  The dogs will be glad to know they can continue to hunt mice in this field....for another year at least.