July 6, 2010

Kentucky grape growers will have an opportunity to hear from grape and wine industry experts at the 2010 Kentucky Vineyard Society Field Day. Specialists from the University of Kentucky College of Agriculture and North Carolina State University will offer the latest research and recommendations July 25 at Talon Winery and Vineyards in Lexington.

"With roughly 500 acres, the grape and wine industry in Kentucky is still developing at a fast pace," said Patsy Wilson, UK viticulturist. "We have more than 125 growers and 62 wineries."

The one-day event starts at 11 a.m. with registration, and the program begins at noon with a welcome from Wilson, followed by a short Kentucky Vineyard Associationmeeting. The afternoon program includes a two-part presentation from NCSU's Sara Spayd, who will talk about adjusting vine nutrition to optimize fruit quality.

Jeff Wheeler from the UK Department of Horticulture will discuss managing vine vigor with cover crops, and Shawn Wright from the UK Robinson Center for Appalachian Resource Sustainability will talk about weed biology and management in the vineyard. Tom Priddy, meteorologist for the UK Ag Weather Center will explain the Kentucky Mesonet and the center's precision agriculture forecasting capabilities and how these services help grape growers.

Sean Lynch from the UK Department of Horticulture will wrap up the lecture portion of the program with information about consumer purchase habits and attitudes toward locally grown table grapes.

The day will conclude with a wine tasting, led by Wheeler and UK Enologist Tom Cottrell, and then dinner on the grounds.

Registration received by July 20 is $25 for KVS members, $30 for non-members. After July 20, registration is $35. Make checks payable and send them to Viticulture Field Day, c/o Pam Compton, University of Kentucky Department of Horticulture, Agriculture Science Center N318, Lexington, KY 40546.

News Topics: