Tuesday, May 15, 2007


My one grape vine (table grapes of questionable variety and quality which came with the property) has put out its first shoots. I prune it back hard every winter and let it fruit from new shoots every summer. As I drive around our county I see vineyards everywhere, all sending out young green shoots from vines trained along wires. Ever since Thomas Jefferson and his Italian friend Philip Mazzei tried to start growing grapes and making wine in this area in the late eighteenth century, folks have been convinced that this is the right location for wine. There are now more than two dozen wineries within a short drive and many more vineyards. Jefferson never succeeded in producing a remarkable wine, but the new wineries have had a bit more success.

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