A late frost – every winemaker’s nightmare

Until recently we were enjoying the first signs of spring and the rising temperatures in the vineyard (see Spring awakening in the vineyard) – and now this! April 2017 has been the warmest month in vast parts of Switzerland since the start of weather recordings. The vines have therfore started to grow much too early. Suddenly the temperatures fell sharply and reached an extreme low of up to minus 12 degrees celcius in exposed locations in the area of Visp in the Valais lasting for three consecutive nights. Unfortunately, our vines have not or only partially survived that shock. This is the sad picture of the scene :

If we are lucky, some buds will still develop but it will not be sufficient to develop good quality grapes. Whilst this is sad for hobby wine-growers it is far more serious for professional wine-growers as it can be a threat to their existence as the frost can lead to a total loss of the harvest.  Wait and see is now the motto but we still hope that the vines will at least partly recover. Some have started already:

Restart Frost Vines

Restart Frost Vines