Cabernet wine is well known and loved by all connoisseurs of dry red wines. Almost all countries where there is own winemaking, from cold Canada to roast Lebanon, grow the same-name grape variety with not very large dark blue berries of a round shape. Branded wines Cabernet produces Italy and Spain, Ukraine and Moldova, Chile and Argentina, as well as South Africa, Australia and the United States of America.
- Inference history
- Description of biological features
- The advantages and disadvantages of the variety
- How to choose grapes when buying
- When and where is better to plant on the site
- How to plant: planting scheme seedlings on the site
- Rules of seasonal care for grapes "Cabernet Sauvignon"
- Watering mode
- Literate pruning
- Disease and Pest Resistance: Treatment and Protection
- Frost resistance: shelter for the winter
- Using Cabernet Sauvignon grapes for making wine
"Cabernet Sauvignon", he is "Petite Vidure" - a grape variety with a three hundred year history, derived in the famous French Aquitaine, known for the production of Bordeaux wines (however, according to some sources, this grape exists in the territory of modern France since the times of Ancient Rome).
Today it is reliably known that the variety is the result of the crossing of two Bordeaux varieties - a white Sauvignon, which gave the frost resistance to a new variety, and a red cabernet franc, which gave the hybrid a bright aroma and unique structure.
The second half of the XVII century in France was very active in the field of winemaking. At this time, wine production was actively coming into vogue, and not only professionals of several generations, but also eccentric bourgeois and middle landowners were involved in it.
He did not bypass this specific type of agriculture and monasteries, where the monks were also actively conducting all sorts of breeding experiments and experiments. On the other hand, the Great French Revolution that broke out in this epoch could well absorb the painstaking records of amateur winemakers, which explains the lack of information on the process of grape-making cabernet.
Anyway, Cabernet Sauvignon very quickly made a direct and successful competition to the more capricious Bordeaux grape varieties Merlot and Malbec. And the Cabernet grapes began their triumphal march around the world in the middle of the nineteenth century and since then has conquered a huge number of countries on almost all continents.
Description of biological features
Cabernet Sauvignon belongs to late grape varieties, its crop in our country is usually harvested not earlier than October. The vine takes root quite easily and ripens without any problems, the yield is quite high. The leaves are round with red toothed tips. Spreading of bushes is high, shoots are covered with thick fuzz; in youth they have a very light, almost white shade.
Cabernet Sauvignon forms long, up to 15 cm, loose clusters in the shape of a cone, sometimes with a side branch. Round berries - up to 1.5 cm in diameter and up to 3 g of weight. The color of the berries is dark blue, the skin is rough, covered with a waxy coating. Bones in the berries are present, but their number is small. Grapes juicy, pleasant to the taste.
The advantages and disadvantages of the variety
Cabernet Sauvignon grapes are so easy to grow and care that they are sometimes called lazy grapes. It is drought resistant and almost does not rot when watering, is not afraid of either severe winter or spring frosts, has little susceptibility to the most dangerous diseases for grapes (in particular, phylloxera and mildew) and pests (grape leafworm), stably ripen and perfectly adapts to changeable conditions.
Among the disadvantages of a variety, it is possible to distinguish perhaps a rather high shedding of berries and a lower yield than in other noble Bordeaux varieties. Another problem of this variety is the so-called pea, which manifests itself in the appearance of small and very acidic green unformed berries on the grapes.
The remaining shortcomings of the variety, if they can be called such, are related to the taste qualities of berries as wine raw materials - too heavy, rich and tart taste, insufficient piquancy, but this deficiency is skillfully compensated by the addition of other grapes to the wine, in particular Merlot and “parental” "Cabernet Franc.
How to choose grapes when buying
The main condition for the acquisition of high-quality seedlings - appeal to this goal in a proven place. Unscrupulous dealers perfectly mastered the skill of deceiving inexperienced buyers, therefore, it would be easy for them to give a fresh look to low-quality raw materials.
And yet, some rules for choosing saplings of grapes need to know in order to protect yourself at least from obvious and obvious marriage.
- The roots of grapes saplings dry up very quickly, after which the plant can be very difficult to settle down.
- It is better to purchase seedlings immediately before planting, since they do not tolerate storage. If you are going to plant grapes in spring, you should not buy a seedling in the fall.
- A large number of leaves on autumn saplings is a reason to abandon the purchase: it is likely that a large amount of moisture has already come out through the leaves, and the sapling is dehydrated.
- Always purchase seedlings in season and with a large selection.
Ask the seller to carry out certain manipulations with the seedling to make sure that the vine is alive:
- if you cut off the top of a seedling or remove a small section of the skin, you should see the juicy and moist green flesh;
- on the fresh cut, the root should be light and moist, like a cut raw potato tuber;
- when bent, the vine may crackle slightly, but not break;
- buds in a healthy seedling do not fall off from the slightest touch;
- the vaccination site should be well accrete - twist the seedling at the junction of the graft with the stock on the principle of squeezing wet laundry and consider it carefully afterwards: you should not see any cracks or gaps;
- On the other hand, if you don’t see the vaccine at all, it means that it doesn’t exist, despite all the seller’s assurances that everything has grown together so that it is no longer noticeable: you are just trying to sell an unvaccinated sapling instead of grafted.
The high price is also not a guarantee of quality, as well as numerous certificates with seals. Trust your eyes and the reputation of the seller: if you have acquired a beautiful seedling, but it has not caught on - think whether it is worth asking for the same raw material for new raw materials.
When and where is better to plant on the site
There are two ways of planting grapes - spring and autumn. Each has its own characteristics, its own advantages and disadvantages. So, the spring planting is good because the vine will definitely take root well before the frost, but this method is associated with certain risks of storing seedlings until spring.
That is why many experts prefer to plant grapes almost in the winter, choosing an especially warm day for this, so as not to store the seedling for several months.
If there is a choice, grapes are planted in the fall long before the first frosts (around mid-October), so that unbroken roots are not destroyed as a result of a sharp drop in temperature.
Planting and cultivation of grapes begins with the choice of location. The best place for Cabernet Sauvignon is the southern or south-western slope of the site with good lighting and ventilation. The vineyard is placed from north to south.
The composition of the soil Cabernet Sauvignon grapes does not impose high requirements, but good drainage and general nutritional value of the soil is welcome.
How to plant: planting scheme seedlings on the site
How to grow cabernet grapes in the country - the answer to this question depends on what territory you have for this and how much wine you want to have. As was said, a small number of bushes can be planted in one row at a distance of at least one and a half meters from the nearest structure.
But if you plan to build a real vineyard, seedlings should be placed in rows, the distance between which should be at least three meters, so that all the clusters receive enough light. The distance between Cabernet Sauvignon grapes in a row should be about one and a half meters.
When planting a seedling, a pipe with a wide diameter or an inverted plastic bottle with a cut-off bottom is buried in a hole to irrigate the vine through such a device.
However, given the unpretentiousness of Cabernet Sauvignon, three years after the vine has taken root, such a pipe can be safely removed - the grapes are quite able to independently obtain the moisture it needs from deep layers of soil, and does not need special privileges in irrigation.
Rules of seasonal care for grapes "Cabernet Sauvignon"
As already mentioned, the Cabernet grapes are easy to grow, because the variety is unpretentious for changing weather and is not very afraid of pests. But this does not mean that leaving such a vine is not required at all.
Proper watering is very important in the technology of growing wine berries. Excess moisture, like its deficiency, has a bad effect on the harvest. As has been said, during the first three years of the life of the vine it is better to water it through a pipe dug in a hole or a plastic bottle, then these devices can be safely removed.
Tying the vine to the trellis after removing the winter shelter, produce its first watering. At the beginning of the growing season, the grapes need especially a lot: one bush will take up to 40 liters of water.
Later, before the ripening of the berries, two more waterings are carried out: the first - a few days before the start of flowering, and the second - after the flowering has ended. When the grapes begin to take shape berries, watering must stop regardless of the soil moisture, this rule applies to any grape varieties.
Finally, just before winter itself, a few days before dropping, the grapes are watered again (this is done so that the vine does not enter the winter with dried out soil, such ground freezes over and the grapes may die from too severe frost).
Fully grown vineyards can be watered even less. Actually, throughout the season, the vine can extract from the soil a sufficient amount for moisture development, but watering is obligatory before winter.
It is also necessary to feed the grapes with caution, because an excess of fertilizer slows the growth of the vine and reduces the yield. If before planting the grapes you have taken care of saturating the soil with organic and mineral fertilizers, this reserve is enough for the first three or four years not to add anything to the earth.
From organic grapes respond very well to manure, also suitable peat and compost. Mineral supplements - carbamide, ammonium nitrate, superphosphate, and potash fertilizers (potassium sulphate, potassium salt, wood ash). Complex mineral additives can also be used, such as Florovit, Kemira and others.
In the spring, simultaneously with the first watering, it is necessary to feed the grapes with mineral supplements containing nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium. Each bush will need 50 g of phosphate and 20 g of potash fertilizer. A shallow trench is dug around the bush, fertilizer is placed in it, and sprinkled with earth on top.
The next fertilization can be carried out before flowering, this time using organic matter and some more potash and phosphate fertilizer (approximately 15 g and 25 g, respectively, based on a bucket of water).
Feeding the grapevine can also be sprayed, and this form of fertilizer is well combined with preventive treatment from pests. For this, it is most convenient to purchase a ready-made product in a specialized store (“Akvarin,” Plantafol, ”Novofert, etc.).
Cabernet Sauvignon is especially in need of proper pruning, as overloaded vine produces a bad crop. Pruning can be done at any time of the year, but each pruning has its own characteristics.
If it was not possible to prune in the fall, or the bush planted in the autumn throws out too many shoots, you can carefully remove them in early spring, when it is still not completely warm, but the real cold is over. At this time, dry and diseased branches of the vine are also removed.
In the summer of grapes pinch, remove excess branches and leaves. A properly formed shrub should be well lit by the sun from all sides in order for the berries to ripen better. In the fall, the grapes are pruned during harvest (weak shoots are removed and so-called "tops" - shoots without grapes). Then, after the leaves fall, a more cardinal pruning is performed.
On a young seedling, as a result of pruning, 3-7 side shoots should be left, no more. On an adult vine in September, it is necessary to remove all side shoots that were fired lower than half a meter from the ground. Then, from shoots growing at a height higher than 0.8 m above the ground, the tops are cut to one tenth, and all side branches are also removed.
Then, during the second autumn pruning at a height of about a meter from the ground, you need to choose a pair of the strongest shoots: cut the bottom one, leaving 3-4 buds, and cut the top one on the opposite side at about 10 buds - this is where the clusters will form.
Disease and Pest Resistance: Treatment and Protection
We mentioned above that Cabernet Sauvignon is very resistant to even the most terrible enemies of grapes. Nevertheless, in order not to have problems with diagnosis and treatment, it is necessary to carry out certain preventive measures to protect the vine from such misfortunes as the grape and spider mites, pruritus, moth, as well as various fungal diseases and rot.
In specialized stores you can purchase universal preparations for the prophylactic treatment of grapes, which possess both fungicidal and insecticidal properties and, in addition, stimulate the growth of the vine. Since these drugs are usually toxic, treatment should be carried out in early spring. And if the vine is still affected, and the treatment is carried out later - in any case, it must be fully finished at least one month before harvest.
But who is really dangerous for the Cabernet - it wasps. Carefully and regularly inspect the site for the presence of wasp nests on it.If these insects attack your crop, set up special traps or, if all else fails, cover the clusters with gauze.
Frost resistance: shelter for the winter
Cabernet Sauvignon belongs to frost-resistant varieties (the vine can withstand temperatures down to -30 ° C), but when growing grapes in the middle lane for the winter, it should be covered. Actually, damage to vineyards as a result of frost is a very complex science, where it’s important not only how low the temperature fell during the winter, but also how unexpected and serious the autumn and spring frosts were, what winds prevailed during the cold season and t. n.
Therefore, in order not to risk, you should not leave the vineyard on the trellis for the whole winter.
The easiest way to shelter a grape is by dropping. You can prepare for the vine and more time-consuming place for wintering - cover it with boards, plywood, film and other improvised materials, lined up a pillow from dry grass.
Covering the grapes with a film also proved to be not very good: if you do not have the opportunity to arrange regular airing for the vine, it can rot and rot.
Using Cabernet Sauvignon grapes for making wine
And finally, the most pleasant thing is harvesting and preparing wine.
For which year Cabernet Sauvignon grapes fruit depends on a lot of factors, but on average it will take three to five years to wait from the moment of planting.
Cabernet wine is loved by many: it has a spicy and tart taste with a hint of currant. True, young cabernet resembles ink in color, and its taste is very heavy. Ripens the drink for a long time, but over time, it acquires a noble pomegranate shade and a very complex bouquet.
The astringency (thanks to the hard skin and bones) and the aroma of black currant are the visiting card of the Cabernet Sauvignon.
As mentioned above, when preparing wine from Cabernet Sauvignon, other varieties of wine are usually added to the drink to harmonize the taste, but a varietal drink from this grape is also produced.
The indisputable advantage of this variety for beginner winemakers is its predictability: in whatever conditions the vine grows, whatever is added to the drink during preparation, the main note of Cabernet remains recognizable.
The recipe and technology for preparing high-quality wine at home is a topic for a separate article. The only advice that I would like to give to beginners: take care in advance about the purchase of real wine yeast, suitable for the production of red wines, because the wine on natural yeast has nothing to do with the noble drink that you can prepare with your own hands, carefully observing the technology.
Thus, by deciding to grow Cabernet Sauvignon grapes in their area,you do not bother yourself with big troubles, but in October you will take off a wonderful harvest of high-quality wine raw materials and enjoy yourself and delight your guests with an exquisite and noble drink.