Growing concerns about season’s water supply

Regardless of what part of the state a grape is grown in, the water situation is a huge question, says Gary Roberts, PCA with Wilbur-Ellis at Manteca, Calif.

“It’s okay right now in this area, but they say it’s going to be tight,” he says. “Growers will need to watch that situation pretty closely this year.

“Chardonnay is out about four or five inches,” says Roberts, “and we’re starting to spray some sulfur.

“There seems to be more and more vine mealybug showing up in this area. It’s going to be important to watch out for it, and train farm laborers how to look for it.”

There are four mealybug species that can cause economic damage to California grape vineyards — grape mealybug, obscure mealybug, longtailed mealybug and vine mealybug. The vine mealybug is the most threatening.

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