SPRING HAS SPRUNG!
It is a delightful time of the year and the most beautiful flowers are starting to show up on the farm indicating that temperatures are rising and we are getting into the new season!
John Kotze our new vineyard manager is passionate about sustainable farming and has the following to say about the past season, what we have done in the vineyards and what we are to expect in 2017:
“At Morgenhof we are hugely dependent on rainfall during the winter months as we practice dry land farming. We anticipated a little more rain during the season – and although we received only about two thirds of what we did last year this time, it still is slightly more. Having said that, historical rainfall patterns at Morgenhof has shown that rain is still possible up until December. Our September so far has been characterised by cool, wet days and we are ever so grateful for every bit of rain we receive!On the topic of dry land farming (and not allowing ourselves to irrigate), a lot of concentration is directed towards nutrition in our vineyards. One of our main focuses this year has been to embark on a new nutritional programme that would support growth in the vineyard. We are expecting a bigger crop as a result of this. We have also reintroduced cover crops in our vineyards and this contributes to better moisture balance and fixes the soil structure. The cooler evenings we’ve experienced so far compared to the previous season is also beneficial for gradual ripening and with early budding varieties like Chardonnay we are observing a lot more even ripening. This is always a challenge as South Africa is a warm country and we are easily confronted by warm spells and heat waves in the run up to the harvest.
In the vineyards it has been raining ladybirds! Ladybirds are beneficial insects as they control mealy bugs and other parasitic pests around. We are currently also busy with alien plant and tree removal and we hope to continue with this in future. We carefully plan which trees to leave so as to create perches for raptors and owls to hunt and rest from.
All in all the farm and vineyards are looking beautiful and we hope to have a very successful 2017 harvest ahead of us!”
MORGENHOF ESTATE 48 YEAR OLD CHENIN BLANC VINES
I had the privilege to visit one of the oldest blocks on our farm recently with John, our vineyard manager. I was greeted by friendly old fellows with open arms and hardy appearances! They give us the amazing Morgenhof Chenin Blanc which has become so very popular over the past few years. 48 Year old vines tell a story…it is a bit like drinking history! Our Chenin Blanc is a particularly great food style wine and pairs very well with fine creamy pastas and grilled seafood
T:021 889 2000