With the winds blowing Easterly the odds of us receiving the much anticipated precipitation were long, but this was Melbourne cup day, and a 100-1 chance had just taken out the prestigious prize so perhaps there was still a chance yet. It was tense times on Tuesday, flicking between the BOM radar and the sports bet account taking each way bets on which horse would win next and when the rain would come. The forecast was for 20-40mms but with the wind coming from the wrong direction we were sceptical. Was this to be yet another Barossa doughnut over Izway Wines, with rain all around but not a drop to bestow us? Thankfully no it wasn’t. Finally the wind swung and the heavens open up with 30ml of rain over Tuesday night and Wednesday.
After a relatively dry winter these spring rains are a welcomed sight. A Super El Nino is predicated this summer which will likely result in at least 1-2 heat waves over the coming months. These spring rains will help keep the soil moisture up and hopefully keep the vines healthy during the hot conditions to come. More importantly, the timing of the rain has been perfect. In dry grown vineyards like ours timing is everything in achieving the best outcome for fruit growth and vine health. The most important times to receive rain are during bud burst, flowering and veraison (the onset of ripening). Bud burst was paralleled with rains in late August/early September and this recent rain has coincided perfectly with flowering. We’re now looking to complete the trifecta with further rain in December/January at the onset of ripening. Let’s hope we have more luck with the rain than we did with the betting on Melbourne Cup day.