Technique

10 Tips for a Successful Harvest Day

For the home vineyardist, harvest day is the most important — or at least the busiest — day of the year. Planning and preparation is critical in order for everything to run smoothly. Let our harvest day tips guide you to great grape picking . . . and wonderful wine. Harvest comes once per year and being prepared is vital. You can’t make up for poor farming in the last week before harvest, but you can prepare your home vineyard for harvest just like the pros. An entire year’s work in the vine rows can either pay off in delicious wine or it can produce wine that underperforms and makes you wonder why you went to all the trouble of growing grapes. My job is to shove you gently toward the delicious and away from the disappointing. I’ve written articles on most aspects of backyard grape farming. (I’ve also met many of you and answered your questions at the wonderful WineMaker Conference in Sonoma this past May.) However, I’ve never broken down my professional harvest experiences into a top ten