Lake Erie Regional Grape Program Enrollment

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  • Crop Management
  • Market Development
  • Farm Business

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  • Crop Update Weekly Electronic Newsletter
  • Educational Meetings & Conferences
  • Discounted Conference Registration Fees

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FALL   •   WINTER   •   SPRING   •   SUMMER          New Vineyard Timeline
Grape - Spring Content


1-year Pre-plant · Develop Record Keeping System

The key to being able to implement a successful vineyard management strategy on a yearly basis is record keeping. Whether it is keeping track of the costs of inputs, documenting yield each year or mapping pest outbreaks, the more information you have collected in an organized record keeping system the better management decisions you will be able to make.

The biggest hurdle to implementing a record keeping system is often times getting into the habit of collecting the data in an organized manner. Computers have significantly increased the ability to develop databases that can easily track measurements over multiple years.

The following are the essential types of records to be maintained on a block-by-block basis to provide you with the information necessary to make informed decisions in your vineyard management strategy.

  • Nutrition (Soil and Petiole testing and nutrients applied)
  • Weather
  • Infection periods for grape diseases
  • Scouting results for weeds, insects, diseases, nutritional deficiencies
  • Preharvest damage assessments from disease and insects.
  • Yield
  • Pesticide applications or pest management strategies
  • Cost of inputs

Implementing an effective Integrated Vineyard Management strategy for grapes starts with knowledge of your own vineyard. Rather than thinking globally and treating your vineyard operation as a single unit, vineyard maps should be developed on a block-by block basis. Different varieties, different soil types, differences in nutrition or harvest strategies are all examples of block components that could be a reason to create a new block. Deciding how many blocks make up your vineyard operation and then creating a map for each is the first important step in monitoring your grapes. Think of vineyard maps as one, a template you will use for documenting what you observe in a vineyard, and two, the source of information that will be used in developing historical databases. These maps can be as simple as a line drawing or as complex as overlays on GIS maps. Again, the key to developing the most useful system of mapping and record keeping is to create maps of vineyard blocks rather than the entire vineyard operation.

Vineyard blocks should be mapped for two reasons. The first is to obtain the true dimensions of the field so the acreage can be accurately calculated. Hereby, the correct rates of materials such as pest control products, fertilizer and water for irrigation can be applied and waste is avoided, per acre yields can be accurately measured, and to assist in the processing of paperwork for Crop insurance claims or signing up for NRCS programs. The second reason is to pinpoint the location of pest infestations, nutrient deficiencies and other observed problems. A vineyard map should include surrounding terrain as well as buildings, roads, or other man-made features. Knowing whether wooded edges are present or absent is critical in assigning a risk for the Grape Berry Moth Risk Assessment protocol. Wooded edges also extend wetting periods in a vineyard block that can lead to increased pressure from powdery mildew, black rot, downy mildew and Phomopsis Cane and Leaf Spot.

Block-by-block record keeping is crucial in providing cost of production information, pest status through the growing season, and to identify problem areas that need to be addressed. Treating a vineyard operation as a single unit will not provide you the detail necessary to determine which block is profitable and if required inputs for problem areas are cost effective.

There are some key components that should be considered when developing a block-by-block system of mapping for any vineyard operation. These components should include but are not limited to:

Vineyard block dimensions. Knowing the exact dimensions of the block, including vine count by row, allows for precise calculations in the application of both pest management tools, fertilizers, and water for irrigation.

Varieties planted. This knowledge is helpful in identifying susceptibility of a particular block to the various diseases and insect pests. This also helps determine if copper and or sulfur can be safely used without potetial phytotoxicity problems. Table 3.1.2 in the NY and PA Pest Management Guidelines for Grapes lists relative disease susceptibility and sensitivity to sulfur and copper among grape varieties.

Surrounding topography. Identify the tree lines, slopes, waterways, ravines and impediments to both air and water drainage and any sources of alternate hosts for vineyard pests.

Structures within and bordering the block. Any barns, equipment storage, or other large buildings may impact the conditions found in the vineyard. Large buildings may decrease air flow, cause debris to collect in unusual places, and provide an over-wintering area for some pests.

Waterways and water runoff collection areas. Keep in mind the correct pesticide to use around waterways and where runoff of fertilizer applications will end up.

Driveways and Headlands. Knowing the location and size of headlands helps to keep block size calculations accurate.

Roads. Road salt, wind and grime from passing traffic will play a role in mapping, as well as how and when you can use your sprayer to make pesticide applications.

There can also be problems from off-site sources: Herbicide drift from applications made to cornfields, runoff from a truck washing pad or pesticide fill pad, applications from lawn care companies in neighboring yards, salt runoff from applications made to roadways during the winter, natural gas wells, and homeowner complaints about pest management and fertilizer applications that affect their quality of life.

Methods of creating a field map

Hand drawn maps - these maps roughly show outline of vineyard blocks with surrounding topography, buildings, roadways, etc.

Hand drawn maps used in conjunction with numbered rows and post lengths. These allow the user to better pinpoint the problem areas. Somewhere records are kept as to the number of vines/postlengths for each individual row.

Computer generated maps - same components as hand drawn maps but a bit neater and having map saved on computer increases a growers ability to make changes to a amp. Easier to print off a new map or make multiple copies.

GPS assisted maps - use GPS to mark boundries of vineyard block to get actual acreage. Use GPS when scouting to pinpoint location of problem. Can GPS every vine in every row in higher value grapes.

Resources available for record keeping:


NEWA - Network for Environment and Weather Applications

Content by:

Tim Weigle
New York State Grape Integrated Pest Management Specialist
Lake Erie Regional Grape Program


Andy Muza
Extension Educator, Erie County
Penn State Cooperative Extension

Upcoming Events

No Coffee Pot Meeting This week

Event Offers DEC Credits

June 7, 2023

view details

LERGP Coffee Pot Meeting #6

Event Offers DEC Credits

June 14, 2023
Westfield, NY

Come join us for timely and pertinent vineyard discussion, coffee, donuts and camaraderie.

view details

LERGP Coffee Pot Meeting #7

Event Offers DEC Credits

June 21, 2023
Ransomville, NY

Come join us for timely and pertinent vineyard discussion, coffee, donuts and camaraderie.

view details


July 19th Coffee Pot Meeting CANCELLED

Please accept our apologies as we found this meeting in direct conflict with other unavoidable events.

NYWGF presents Introduction to New York Wine

Welcome to New York! Introduction to New York Wines
Building on the success of the newly updated New York Wine Reference Guide, NYWGF is pleased to bring comprehensive, expertly delivered New York wine education to your team each week from April 25th through June 20th, 2023. We welcome you to join wine writer and educator Dan Belmont as he leads this nine (9) part series - completely free for NYWGF Winery and Grower Members.
From our first 90-minute 'deep dive' into the wines of New York, to the subsequent 60- minute sessions on our major varietals and wine regions, this educational opportunity will be unlike any other and extremely valuable to winery and vineyard leaders, tasting room and marketing staff, as well as to trade, media, and consumers who are champions of New York wine. Tasting components are part of each session - with recommended wines for each session to be announced in advance of the seminar date.
We agree with Eric Asimov who noted in the New York Times that "New York is the third largest wine- producing state in the country, after California and Washington. Yet it doesn't get nearly the respect it deserves." Fortunately, much has changed in the last few years and information about New York wines is being sought out by all levels of consumer, trade, and media. This session will empower you with knowledge and introduce you to the major regions, grapes, and styles of New York State wine, and provide an overview of statewide geography, geology, climate & history. Participants will gain conversational-level broad knowledge of New York State wine and leave excited about the upward trends in both quality winemaking and viticulture in New York State.
Arrowhead Spring Chardonnay 2021 (Niagara)
Boundary Breaks Dry Riesling 2021 (Finger Lakes)
Mazza Chautauqua Cellars Gew?rztraminer 2017 (Lake Erie)
Benmarl Winery Estate Cabernet Franc 2018 (Hudson Valley)
Macari Merlot 2019 (Long Island)
Vesco Ridge Diamond (Champlain Valley)
Meadowdale Winery Blue Jay Dechaunac (Upper Hudson)
Please Note: Suggested wines for tastings must be purchased separately and are not included with registration.
Tomorrow! Tue, April 25, 2023 9:00 AM - 10:00 AM EDT
Click Here to Register
Sessions are free for all NYWGF Members. Attendees must register for the full series and will be provided with seminar recordings if unable to attend live.
About our Host: Dan Belmont
Dan BelmontDan is a London-based certified American Wine Expert and holds a Level-3 certification in Wines & Spirits from the WSET. He led the education departments of NYC's famed Murray's Cheese, the largest artisan cheese retailer in the US, and Bedales of Borough, a trio of wine bars based in London's historic markets. Dan is the Wine Ambassador for Liebherr UK and proudly supports the New York Wine & Grape Foundation along with a variety of international trade associations and producers as a presenter, educator & judge. In 2022 he authored the latest edition of the New York State Wine Reference Guide. Dan operates in constant awe of the good people who dedicate themselves to the odyssey that is producing good wine. It is in that spirit that he created Good Wine Good People - a unique e-commerce wine retail platform serving the UK market.

Straight Talk: Is H-2A Working Out in the Vineyard

Check out the story below.  Our local grower Andy Knight is one of the 3 growers interviewed.

2023 LERGP Coffee Pot Schedule

2023 LERGP Coffee Pot Meeting Schedule

May 3, 2023 10:00am Double A Vineyards
10317 Christy Rd. Fredonia NY 14063

May 10, 2023 10:00am Niagara Landing Wine Cellars
4434 Van Dusen Rd. Lockport NY 14094

May 17, 2023 10:00am John Schultz & Sons
9510 Sidehill Rd. North East PA 16428

May 24, 2023 10:00am Brian Chess Farm
10289 West Main Rd. Ripley NY 14775

May 31, 2023 10:00am Sprague Farms
12435 Versailles Rd. Irving NY 14081

June 7, 2023 10:00am NO COFFEE POT MEETING

June 14, 2023 10:00am Betts' Farm
7365 East Route 20 Westfield, NY 14787

June 21, 2023 10:00am Paul Bencal Farm
2645 Albright Rd. Ransomville NY 14131

June 28, 2023 10:00am Gary Young Farm
8401 Gulf Rd. North East PA 16428

July 5, 2023 10:00am NO COFFEE POT MEETING

July 12, 2023 10:00am Zach & Alicia Schneider Farm
771 Bradley Rd. Silver Creek NY 14136

July 19, 2023 10:00am Schultze Winery
2090 Coomer Rd. Burt NY 14028

July 26, 2023 10:00am Westfield Ag & Turf
7521 Prospect Rd. Westfield NY 14787

Spotted Lanternfly Public Service Announcement

Please take a look at this PSA on YouTube.  It is narrated by our very own Jennifer Phillips Russo.
If you see a Spotted Lanternfly:
1-Take a photo
2-Collect it
3-Squish it
4-Report it

LERGP Podcasts- check them out!


LERGPLake Erie Regional Grape Program - Cornell Cooperative Extension
Your Trusted Source for Research-Based Knowledge
In Partnership with Penn State