Sunday, 31 July 2011

Swathed in Vines.

The whole (not the back) of our cottage is swathed in vines. I love the foliage, and the grapes to me are just as beautiful as flowers.

The variety I've planted is called Baco or Bacco. It's the disease resistant root stock that was imported into Europe from the USA after the Philloxera epidemic of the late 19th Century.

Baco is not an eating grape, although we do hand-press the fruit for juice. Otherwise they get picked quite early and put onto the compost. To leave them on the vine simply invites the huge, and dangerous, sugar-hungry Hornets right into our world.

At present we have two individual vine plants that cover the cottage. Some years back we had but one, and it annually produced over 200 bunches of grapes. I don't think I can be bothered to count them again, but this year there are probably well over 300.

It's almost juice season, although I'm already drinking last years juice (not our own) in a slightly different form.
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15 comments:

  1. I love vines on a home and it must look spectacular when the grapes are at their prime.
    Does it keep your home cool?
    Helen

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  2. I suppose it must do to a certain extent. It certainly makes indoors seem more inviting when it's overly hot.

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  3. i can only imagine how good this looks,do the birds come for the fruit?or perhaps you pick it before that happens,just delightful Cro,it is lovely to read of the fruits of the seasons in other countries while we anticipate it to be our time .

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  4. Don't you make wine out of them Cro, or do they need to stay on the vine longer for that?

    Saw a hornet the other day on the plot. It was so big I thought it was a sparrow at first!

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  5. Chris, I did make wine once. It tasted of petrol...maybe I should have tried it in the car.

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  6. Sound like the Beetroot plonk I made a couple of years back.

    An acquired taste!

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  7. When we lived in Toronto, I used to walk quite regularly in a local cemetery that was full of grape vines and fruit trees that were never picked. By the end of the summer a lot of the fruit had fermented and the squirrels would have a fine old time feasting on the crops. One of the funniest things I saw was one such squirrel, obviously totally looped lying face-down, spread-eagle atop a cool grave-stone. I bet he had one heck of a hangover the next day!

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  8. These are spectacular---what a gorgeous sight it must be. I imagine the juice must be incredibly healthy.

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  9. They look great. I know what you mean about them not being the kind to eat. That's how mine are though I do still chew on a few because, despite the thick skins, their flavor is really nice. You mentioned hornets, but do you also get spiders? I've had trouble picking grapes because of the nasty eight-leggers jumping out at me.

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  10. Yes, we have spiders too, but I imagine they're harmless. The Hornets, however; a couple of stings and it's 'goodbye'.

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  11. Amy has mentioned spiders...

    ...another sleepless night for me.

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  12. was going to post
    (I did post on yesterdays hen post) then forgot what I was going to say on todays

    I am getting old

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  13. the only thing we can do with our grape vine so far north is make greek stuffed vine leaves as the grapes never really come to anything....lucky you!

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