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The Decision To Plant A New Vineyard

Last year we took the pretty big decision to take more of our land and plant a new vineyard. The land is ideal and possibly even better than our existing vineyards (so the VineWorks team tell us and they would know). But there were a number of challenges we have to overcome.

First, the land was designated permanent pasture and is situated in North Wessex AONB (literally the boundary of the land...). So permission was required from Natural England. A lot of surveys and commitments later, this was granted. But by then it was September and from end September to March, it rained, seemingly incessantly. We couldn't even subsoil let alone do the rest of the ground prep but we had to commit to buy the vines and trellising in case we could plant on time in Spring 2020.

James and Chris at Vineworks have been great at humouring all my "what if" questions about timing but now, finally the ground is drying out and work can begin. The other challenge we have is that one border of the land is woodland and on the other side of the vineyard is more woodland, and a herd of c. 30 Fallow - fencing and more drastic steps may be required.

The new vineyard will produce grapes both for sparkling but also, due to numerous requests, still wine. The neighbouring land we have may not be suitable for vines and I keep musing about planting juniper - but we are NOT going in to gin production, honest...

The Decision To Plant A New Vineyard