Record cold wipes out vineyards in WA’s south

Eighty-percent losses.
But of course the original headline calls it a “cold snap.”
Of course.

10 Nov 2018 – Winemakers in Western Australia’s Great Southern region are reeling from a frost event that damaged up to 80 per cent of their vines.

The acclaimed Frankland River wine region, 120 km north-west of Albany, was worst hit earlier this week by record-low temperatures for November.

Frankland River Grape Growers and Winemakers Association president Hunter Smith said it was one of the worst frost events the region had ever experienced.

“A lot of the growers through the region are affected anywhere to the tune of very little damage through to some growers reporting 70 and even 80 per cent crop loss through that one event,” he said.

Bureau of Meteorology spokesman Neil Bennett said the cold snap broke several records across the region. (Yep, let’s downplay it by using those words again: “cold snap.”)

The frost came at a crucial time as the new growth from the vines approached flowering.

“A lot of those vine leaves are quite thin, so it actually doesn’t take much of a frost event to totally freeze those, and kill those shoots right off,” Mr Smith said.

During a 2014 hail event, the Frankland River’s wineries lost 90 per cent of their crop.

“We’re actually just recovering from all that and now it’s happening all over again,” said Rodney Hallett of family-owned Alkoomi Wines.

Thanks to Rex Alan for this link

5 thoughts on “Record cold wipes out vineyards in WA’s south”

  1. 2014 hail should have been “recovered from” by next season. its just leaves n fruit damaged after all,
    the hard pruning to leaders as vinyards do ensures damaged runners(if any) are removed anyway.
    but yes theyve had some cool weather and right now east of Kalgoorlies just had near 40mm rain dumped very fast looking at radar.
    praying the rainband stays soggy on its way to SA and Vic myself.

  2. “We see a cooling trend,” says Martin Mlynczak of NASA’s Langley Research Center. “High above Earth’s surface, near the edge of space, our atmosphere is losing heat energy. If current trends continue, it could soon set a Space Age record for cold.”

  3. In Germany
    Last year we had the grapes and apple tree blossom devastated by late frost after and early warming.

    This year we might get one of the best wines of the last 100 years. Apple harvest was great.

    Thats weather. When we will have more droughts like this year, it might be climate as well.

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