As we enter veraison, we observe that the window during which berries are changing color is stretching due to the weather cooling off. What does this mean for the uniformity of ripening?
Traditionally it is assumed that the rate of ripening is uniform between berries. Consequently, when a berry turns red later, it is believed to ripen later. Thus, when change in cluster coloration takes longer than usual, the removal of green berries from the cluster is sometimes decided. The thinking is that removal of delayed ripening berries would reduce cluster heterogeneity and help winemakers get more even cluster composition at harvest.
A natural mechanism advances the rate of ripening in green berries compared to red berries
- Ripening program is flexible from berries to berries.
- Uneven berry formation and uneven coloration at mid veraison does not mean uneven ripeness.
- Faster accumulation in under ripe berries reduces ripening differences among berries.
Practicing green berry thinning when veraison takes longer than usual may not be such a good idea after all.
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