After a very cold winter, with the wind chill factor in a strong Mistral plummeting the temperature down to -7°C and sometimes -10°C, March finally saw Cairanne spring into action for the growing season ahead.
Flowers emerge from the round pebble stones in our hilltop La Pauline vineyard. On the trees all around buds open their leaves to the sun and our pruned old bush vines stand silhouetted against the emerging blossom.
Sap starts to rise on pruned vines appearing as if the vine is crying.
In days gone by during the pruning season these rough stone huts would be used to store simple tools or braziers to burn vine branches pruned over the winter.
Early April sees the first leaves appear once again on the vines, in this case on bush vine Grenache Noir at La Pauline, first planted in 1969. This vineyard, as have all vineyards in the Domaine Boutinot Rhône estate has now been classified within the recently announced Cru Cairanne appellation.
Much warmer temperatures in May brings new colour and, as on this Mourvèdre vine at our Font Crozes plot, the first buds.
Throughout May flowering continues, with Grenache Noir (above) and Syrah (below).
Temperatures increase and the vines flourish.
Old Grenache Noir vines root deep into the chalky clay soil to nourish the newly set fruit.
By now healthy Syrah berries have developed at La Truffière directly behind Domaine Boutinot’s cellars in Cairanne.
High temperatures (30°C at night) are followed by hail in some areas of the Southern Rhône. Fortunately our Cairanne vineyards escape lightly and as the image above illustrates, our Grenache Noir vines are thriving.
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